New Zealand company Rocket Lab has successfully launched a batch of NASA weather-tracking satellites on the 26th May.
Despite encountering weather delays last week, the Electron two-stage rocket, named Coming To A Storm Near You, lifted off from Launch Complex 1 on the Mahia Peninsula along New Zealand’s east coast.
The rocket carried two compact satellites, no larger than shoeboxes, which will contribute to NASA’s TROPICS project (Time-Resolved Observations of Precipitation structure and storm Intensity with a Constellation of Smallsats).
These satellites will form a constellation of tropical cyclone monitoring satellites.
Shortly after liftoff, the satellites were deployed into low-Earth orbit, marking a successful operation. NASA is now working on establishing communication with the newly deployed orbitals, which may take some time. They will announce the acquisition of the signal once it is achieved.