Saturday 21 November 2009

New Zealand poised to Launch Atea-1 Rocket

due to liftoff,  from Great Mercury Island this november 28, will be the first commercial rocket to use hybrid fuel technology and the first privately built rocket launched from the Southern Hemisphere to enter space with its Atea-1 launch vehicle. Rocket Lab will also be the first practical alternative to conventional rockets at significantly lower cost. The emissions from their unique Gas Turbine engine are non-toxic or carbon free as opposed to the traditional launch platforms.

"The Atea-1 is designed specifically for scientific sub-orbital ‘sounding’ missions. and is almost entirely constructed from lightweight carbon fibre composites. Components such as the rocket nozzle and combustion chamber are all manufactured from Rocket Lab- developed composite materials which are a fraction of the weight of traditional metal components. The rocket generates the equivalent of 3200 horsepower from a rocket engine weighing just 13kg."  Source

The video seen here, is an artistic animation of Rocket Lab's Ātea-1 launch.

Since Great Mercury Island is a privately owned island I guess its only fitting that a privately owned space rocket be launched from it !
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