Next Mission: Don't Stop Me Now
- Mission Name
- Don't Stop Me Now
- Electron Name
- Don't Stop Me Now
- Launch Window
- TBC - Launch operations have been paused in response to the COVID-19 situation.
- Launch Time
- Launch Site
- Launch Complex 1
'Don't Stop Me Now' is a rideshare mission that will launch 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. The satellite will launch as part of NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) and will conduct 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 the 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 carries 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 follows 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 will be 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.
The mission has been named ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ in recognition of Rocket Lab board member and avid Queen fan Scott Smith, who recently passed away.
Rocket Lab will not be carrying out any recovery testing on the Electron launch vehicle during this mission.
• For real time launch updates, follow Rocket Lab on Twitter @RocketLab
• Listen on VHF Ch 79 if you're on the water off the coats of LC-1
• Call us on 0800 110 623.
Viewing A Launch
The best way to view a launch is via Rocket Lab’s live video webcast. This offers the best views of launch and includes helpful commentary about the launch process. A livestream will be made available approximately 15 - 20 minutes prior to a launch attempt. Rocket Lab will post links to the webcast when live via Facebook and Twitter. The livestream is viewable at www.rocketlabusa.com/live-stream and Rocket Lab's YouTube channel.