Aerospace AMAM for Space

Rocket Lab successfully launches Don’t Stop Me Now satellite delivery mission

Electron rocket completes 12th launch powered by 3D printed Rutherford engine

Stay up to date with everything that is happening in the wonderful world of AM via our LinkedIn community.

Rocket Lab, one of the space industry’s unicorn startups, successfully launched its Electron rocket to deliver a payload of satellites to orbit in the Don’t Stop Me Now mission. Rocket Lab is known for its massive use of additive manufacturing in the production of the Electron rocket’s propulsion system, the Rutherford Engine. The rocket launched, as scheduled, on June 13th, from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand.

Named to commemorate a recently passed away member of the Rocket Lab’s Board (who was an avid Queens fan), Don’t Stop Me Now is a rideshare mission that launched several small satellites, including the ANDESITE (Ad-Hoc Network Demonstration for Extended Satellite-Based Inquiry and Other Team Endeavors) satellite created by electrical and mechanical engineering students and professors at Boston University.

Don't Stop Me Now The satellite launched as part of NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) and will conduct a groundbreaking scientific study into Earth’s magnetic field. Once in space, the ANDESITE satellite will initiate measurements of the magnetosphere with onboard sensors, later releasing eight pico satellites carrying small magnetometer sensors to track electric currents flowing in and out of the atmosphere, a phenomenon also known as space weather. These variations in electrical activity racing through space can have a big impact on our lives here on Earth, causing interruptions to things like radio communications and electrical systems. The ANDESITE satellite follows on from Rocket Lab’s first ELaNa (Educational Launch of Nanosatellites) launch for NASA, the ELaNa-19 mission, which launched a host of educational satellites to orbit on Electron in December 2018.

The mission also carried three payloads designed, built and operated by the NRO. The mission was procured under the agency’s Rapid Acquisition of a Small Rocket (RASR) contract vehicle. RASR allows the NRO to explore new launch opportunities that provide a streamlined, commercial approach for getting small satellites into space, as well as provide those working in the small satellite community with timely and cost-effective access to space. This mission followed Rocket Lab’s first dedicated mission for the NRO, Birds of a Feather, which was launched on 31 January 2020 NZT from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1.

The ANDESITE and NRO payloads were joined on the mission by the M2 Pathfinder satellite, a collaboration between the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra Space and the Australian Government. The M2 Pathfinder will test communications architecture and other technologies that will assist in informing the future space capabilities of Australia. The satellite will demonstrate the ability of an onboard software-based radio to operate and reconfigure while in orbit.

 

Research
Composites AM 2024

This new market study from VoxelMatters provides an in-depth analysis and forecast of the three core segments of the composites additive manufacturing market: hardware, materials and services. The ...

Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites VoxelMatters.com and Replicatore.it, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
Close Popup
Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

Technical Cookies
In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • PHPSESSID
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Save
Accept all Services

Newsletter

Join our 12,000+ Professional community and get weekly AM industry insights straight to your inbox. Our editor-curated newsletter equips executives, engineers, and end-users with crucial updates, helping you stay ahead.