"Hope you get back to orbit soon. Rockets are hard."
Blast Off and Blow Up
New Zealand-based spaceflight company Rocket Lab had a very bad day.
Its 13th and most recent launch on July 3, ironically dubbed "Pics or It Didn't Happen," ended in disaster when the upper-stage of its Electron rocket experienced a failure shortly after liftoff. The rocket blew up, exploding seven pricey satellites into smithereens.
But the startup still has friends in high places.
A brief statement about today's mission from our founder and CEO, Peter Beck. pic.twitter.com/QUShtzp7J0
— Rocket Lab (@RocketLab) July 5, 2020
What followed was an awkward statement from Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck, who had the terrible job of apologizing for losing the satellites. Oops.
"It's fair to say, today was a pretty tough day," he said in a video statement.
"We lost the flight late into the mission," Beck tweeted later on. "I am incredibly sorry that we failed to deliver our customers satellites today. Rest assured we will find the issue, correct it and be back on the pad soon."
"Rockets Are Hard"
Luckily, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has a bit of a soft spot when it comes to rockets. "Sorry to hear about this," he tweeted in response to the statement. "Hope you get back to orbit soon. Rockets are hard."
"Thanks Elon," the company's official account shot back. "Appreciate it! The team is working hard to get us back on the pad soon."
United Launch Alliance CEO Tory Bruno also joined in on the pity party by tweeting a brief message of support. "Hang in there, Peter," he wrote.
Even the company that lost satellites in the launch, Planet Labs, had some kind words as well. "While it's never the outcome that we hope for, the risk of launch failure is one Planet is always prepared for," the company told Reuters.
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