Author Topic: SCRUB: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - NET March 24, 2019  (Read 12164 times)

Online Chris Bergin

Presser:

Rocket Lab to launch dedicated Electron mission for DARPA

The mission intends to space-qualify a new membrane reflect-array antenna and highlights the Electron rocket’s suitability as a responsive, flexible and rapidly-acquired launch service for commercial and government missions alike

Huntington Beach, California. January 22, 2019 – Small satellite launch company Rocket Lab announced today that its first mission of 2019 will be a dedicated launch of a 150kg satellite for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The mission highlights US Government demand for the type of responsive, ultra-flexible and rapidly acquired launch service that characterizes the Rocket Lab launch experience on Electron.

 

DARPA’s Radio Frequency Risk Reduction Deployment Demonstration (R3D2) mission is scheduled for launch in late February and intends to space-qualify a prototype reflect array antenna to improve radio communications in small spacecraft. The antenna, made of a tissue-thin Kapton membrane, packs tightly inside the small satellite for stowage during launch, before deploying to its full size of 2.25 meters in diameter once it reaches low Earth orbit. This high compaction ratio enables larger antennas in smaller satellites, enabling satellite owners to take advantage of volume-limited launch opportunities while still providing significant capability. The mission could help validate emerging concepts for a resilient sensor and data transport layer in low Earth orbit – a capability that does not exist today, but one which could revolutionize global communications by laying the groundwork for a space-based internet.

 

“Rapid acquisition of small satellite launch capabilities is increasingly important to US Government organizations like DARPA. The ability to rapidly space-qualify new technology and deploy space-based assets with confidence on short notice is a service that didn’t exist for dedicated small satellites until now,” says Rocket Lab founder and CEO Peter Beck. “We’re honored to provide Electron’s agile and flexible launch service to DARPA and we look forward to delivering the innovative R3D2 payload to orbit.”

 

The mission, the first of monthly Electron launches this year, will lift-off from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 on the Māhia Peninsula of New Zealand. To ensure precise insertion and responsible orbital deployment, the R3D2 payload will be deployed via the Electron Kick Stage to a circular orbit. Using this unique launch method, Electron’s second stage is left in a highly elliptical orbit where the stage is subject to significant atmospheric drag, causing it to de-orbit and burn up to nothing in a reduced time frame. The Kick Stage is then used to deploy the satellite payload to a precise orbit, following which the Kick Stage can perform a de-orbit burn to speed up its re-entry, leaving no orbital debris behind in space.

 

The Rocket Lab Electron launch experience is the world’s first customized small satellite launch service. With the choice of two Rocket Lab launch sites, and the ability to rapidly launch to orbit as frequently as every 72 hours, each mission is tailored to the customer requirements. For the first time, small satellite customers are enjoying unmatched flexibility, responsiveness and control over their own orbit.


ENDS
« Last Edit: Today at 11:44 am by input~2 »


Online Davidthefat

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - Feb, 2019
« Reply #2 on: 01/22/2019 08:57 pm »
That mission patch is on point.

Offline Bean Kenobi

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - Feb, 2019
« Reply #3 on: 01/23/2019 08:33 pm »
So mission name seems to be "DARPA R3D2" this time.

Online russianhalo117

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - Feb, 2019
« Reply #4 on: 01/24/2019 08:20 pm »
Someone want to start predicting this new trajectory and orbit inclination et Cetera.

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #5 on: 02/13/2019 08:11 am »
https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1095576198338338816

Quote
Just popped down to the launch site today in preparation for wet dress roll out tomorrow. #LaunchSiteParadise

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #6 on: 02/13/2019 08:54 pm »
https://twitter.com/rocketlab/status/1095801936341651456

Quote
They see us rollin'....😎

Roll out operations are underway at LC-1 in prep for our next launch. Today's a busy day for the pad team who will assess vehicle and ground systems, plus take Electron vertical for checkouts.

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #7 on: 02/14/2019 06:39 am »
https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1095920253937152004

Quote
Electron is on the pad. It’s going to be a busy year!
« Last Edit: 02/14/2019 06:39 am by FutureSpaceTourist »

Online Olaf

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Offline jamesh9000

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #9 on: 02/18/2019 09:06 am »
The previous launches' WDR took place 4 days before the first launch attempt, not sure why they haven't given us a NET date for this one.

Offline Comga

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #10 on: 02/18/2019 08:03 pm »
In the images above, the fairing is on the Electron for the WDR
Are the payloads encapsulated during this test and any subsequent hot fire?
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Inoeth

Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #11 on: 02/19/2019 05:10 am »
In the images above, the fairing is on the Electron for the WDR
Are the payloads encapsulated during this test and any subsequent hot fire?

I don't think we've ever heard the answer to that question- the best solution might just be to tweet at Peter Beck and ask at some point... I would however guess that (for now) they're doing something similar to SpaceX and not have a payload in the fairing as a way of preventing any sort of AMOS type situation... tho I could be wrong.

I will say I am also surprised that we don't even have a NET date given the success they've apparently had during this launch campaign...

Online russianhalo117

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #12 on: 02/20/2019 01:44 am »
In the images above, the fairing is on the Electron for the WDR
Are the payloads encapsulated during this test and any subsequent hot fire?

I don't think we've ever heard the answer to that question- the best solution might just be to tweet at Peter Beck and ask at some point... I would however guess that (for now) they're doing something similar to SpaceX and not have a payload in the fairing as a way of preventing any sort of AMOS type situation... tho I could be wrong.

I will say I am also surprised that we don't even have a NET date given the success they've apparently had during this launch campaign...
DARPA payload and its experimental mision is reason for vague target date.

Online Kryten

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #13 on: 02/20/2019 09:17 am »
DARPA payload and its experimental mision is reason for vague target date.
The fact they don't have the launch licence yet can't help either.

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #14 on: 02/20/2019 04:12 pm »
DARPA payload and its experimental mision is reason for vague target date.
The fact they don't have the launch licence yet can't help either.

Think they don't need the FAA license for launching a payload for the USAF.

Offline starbase

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« Last Edit: 02/25/2019 02:24 pm by starbase »

Online russianhalo117

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #16 on: 02/25/2019 05:59 pm »
https://twitter.com/Peter_J_Beck/status/1097366320801210371

So what happened in the meantime? Any news?
Per: https://www.rocketlabusa.com/launch-info/launch-complex-1/
Quote
LAUNCH INFORMATION
 Rocket Lab's next launch is the DARPA R3D2 mission. The mission will lift-off from Launch Complex 1 carrying a prototype reflect array antenna designed to improve radio communications in small spacecraft.

The launch window is yet to be announced.
I emailed the project lead and they for this particular mission cannot confirm a change in the launch date at this time.

Online Chris Bergin

Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - late February 2019
« Reply #17 on: 02/28/2019 01:54 pm »
New window will be known in the next few days, per Rocket Lab (asked them).

Offline Ragmar

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Re: Electron - DARPA R3D2 - NET March 2019
« Reply #18 on: 03/04/2019 07:54 pm »
Any update on when this bad boy is going to launch?


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