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Max Q: Anomalous • TechCrunch


Hello and welcome back to Max Q! Last week was not the most successful week for space travel missions. We’ll go into that a bit more below.

In this matter:

  • First, a failed launch from Virgin Orbit…
  • …followed by one from ABL Space Systems
  • News from Rocket Lab, World View and more

Following the failure of Virgin Orbit’s launch last Monday, during which time the mission has undergone a “figurative meaning” put the rocket out of orbit, I reviewed the company’s financials – and things didn’t look right.

For Virgin Orbit, this year could have completely changed. The company has aimed for three launches this year, but things will remain stable until the cause of the anomaly is identified and resolved. It’s unclear how long it will take, but it’s likely at least three months. Add this delay to Virgin’s dwindling cash reserves and you’ll have a foundation that is suddenly much more shaky than before.

virgin orbital space girl and rocket launcherone

Image credits: Virgin Orbit/Greg Robinson

Launch launch Space system ABL’ The first attempt to launch into orbit ended in failure last Tuesday after all nine engines on the RS1 rocket’s first stage stopped working simultaneously. The rocket then hit the launch pad and was destroyed on impact.

ABL President Dan Piemont told TechCrunch that while the investigation into the incident is still in its early stages, “The concurrency of the outage is strong evidence, but the team will take longer to narrow down. contributing factors and root causes.”

“Flight 2’s vehicle is fully assembled and ready to commence flight operations, so we are doing our best to continue that as soon as the Flight 1 investigation is complete,” said Piemont. .

ABL Space RS1 rocket shortly after launch

Image credits: ABL Space RS1 . rocket

More news from TC and more

  • Capella Space added $60 million in growth equity funding to its Series C through investor Thomas Tull’s American Innovation Technology Fund. (Capella)
  • Elon Musk says that SpaceX has had a “real chance” of trying out Starship’s first orbital test flight as soon as next month. (Twitter)
  • Europe The first land-based spaceport, in Sweden, was inaugurated by Swedish dignitaries and other officials. (Cao Bac)
  • space of The HAKUTO-R lander has completed its second orbital maneuver and is now in deep space for more than a month. (ispace)
  • Israel The Air Force will establish its own “space regulator,” similar to the US Space Force. (i24)
  • Planetary Laboratory completed the acquisition of Salo Science, a climate technology company. (Planet)
  • Augsburg Missile Factory and the UK’s SaxaVord Spaceport have signed a multi-year launch agreement that includes RFA conducting its first launch from that site as soon as later this year. (RFA)
  • rocket lab currently targeting January 23 for the first Electron launch from Virginia. The launch will carry three satellites for HawkEye 360. (rocket lab)
  • Russia will send an untapped Soyuz capsule to the International Space Station to bring three astronauts back to Earth, after a coolant leak was detected on the Soyuz now attached to the ISS. (The New York Times)
  • aerospace slingshot brought in Thomas Arend, who was most recently Vice President and Head of Product Management at Astra, as the company’s new product manager. (slingshot)
  • Federal Communications Commission voted to create a brand new Space Bureau that will handle all satellite communications related business and more. (TechCrunch)
  • United States Air Force Research Laboratory and SpaceWERX are supporting the Space Management Training Program for founders and management professionals looking for guidance on how to navigate the complex world of space regulation. Bootcamp will be held in February. (ACSP)
  • United Launch Alliance’s The Vulcan Centaur rocket is starting to make its way to the launch pad ahead of its first test flight. (ULA)
  • worldview, a start-up that uses stratospheric balloons for earth observation (and soon… tourism?!) is going public through a merger of SPACs. (TechCrunch)

Max Q was brought to you by me, Aria Alamalhodaei. If you enjoyed reading Max Q, consider forwarding it to your friends.

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