Virgin Orbit’s Next LauncherOne Mission Scheduled for June
Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne rocket is set to take off in June to launch various defense and commercial cubesats.
The launch vehicle will lift off from the Mojave Air and Space Port in California, carrying six of the tiny satellites, three of which are part of the Department of Defense Space Test Program’s Rapid Agile Launch Initiative, SpaceNews reported.
The upcoming LauncherOne mission also includes the launch of the STORK-4 and STORK-5 cubesats from Polish company SatRevolution. The three-unit cubesats will comprise a 14-satellite constellation that is envisioned to provide medium-resolution multispectral imagery.
Innovative Solutions in Space’s BRIK 2 six-unit cubesat, which will be launched for the Royal Netherlands Air Force to demonstrate how cubesats can support Dutch military operations, completes the lineup for the LauncherOne mission.
Virgin Orbit has named the June launch as “Tubular Bells, Part One” in reference to the first track on the first album released by Virgin Records.
The launch would mark the LauncherOne rocket’s return to orbit after the Launch Demo 2 mission in January, where the space vehicle carried cubesats for NASA’s Venture Class Launch Services program.
In addition, Virgin Orbit has been selected as one of four commercial launch operators to provide launch services for the Brazilian government.
The company was also tapped to launch a constellation of hyperspectral satellites developed by QinetiQ and HyperSat and is preparing for launch missions at Spaceport Cornwall in southwestern England.
Tags: BRIK 2 Department of Defense Innovative Solutions in Space LauncherOne mission NASA Rapid Agile Launch Initiative SatRevolution space SpaceNews STORK-4 STORK-5 Virgin Orbit