A mysterious small satellite built by the German company OHB, purported to be a pathfinder for a Chinese-owned communications constellation, took off from New Zealand Wednesday and soared into orbit on top of a Rocket Lab Electron launcher.
After scrubbing a countdown Saturday to review sensor data, Rocket Lab launched its first mission of 2021 from New Zealand at 2:26 a.m. EST (0726 GMT) Wednesday. The company’s light-class Electron rocket carried a super-secret payload for OHB, a German-headquartered satellite manufacturer.
A small communications satellite built by the German company OHB — a payload so secret that no one has officially disclosed its name or end user — is set to ride a Rocket Lab Electron launcher into orbit Saturday from New Zealand.
Demonstrating a quick turnaround launch capability, China launched a light-class, solid-fueled Kuaizhou 1A rocket Sunday, four days after the same type of satellite booster fired into orbit from the same launch pad.