Rocket Lab is now confident that its reusability dreams can come true.
The company recovered the first stage of its two-stage Electron rocket for the first time on Thursday (Nov. 19), fishing the booster out of the Pacific Ocean a few hours after it had helped launch a 30-satellite mission aptly called “Return to Sender.”
The stage survived its trip back from space in great shape, helping to validate Rocket Lab’s reusability vision, according to company founder and CEO Peter Beck.
“The test was a complete success,” Beck said during a call with reporters today (Nov. 23). “We’re really confident now that Electron can become a reusable launch vehicle.”
The 58-foot-tall (18 meters) Electron, which gives small satellites dedicated rides to orbit, has been an expendable vehicle since its debut launch in 2017. Last year, however, Beck announced that the company plans