Private space company ‘sorry’ for NASA satellites destruction — Analysis
Astra CEO Chris Kemp apologized on Twitter on Thursday after a failure minutes after launch saw the company’s rocket spin out of control and fall toward Earth, destroying four small NASA CubeSats.
“We experienced an issue in today’s flight. It is a deep regret that we weren’t able to deliver the payloads for our customers. I’m with the team looking at data, and we will provide more info as soon as we can,”Kemp made the statement in a statement.
The rocket had been carrying four small satellites as part of NASA’s ELaNa 41 mission, which the space agency has claimed is an “exciting initiative”That is how it works “to attract and retain students in the science, technology, engineering and mathematic disciplines.”
Three satellites were created by educational establishments, while one was built by NASA’s Johnson Space Center. NASA’s Venture Class Launch Services Demonstration, which awarded the contract, does accept that its activities present a “higher level of risk than larger missions.”
Although the cause has yet to be determined, initial media reports indicated that the issue was caused by the separation between the rocket’s upper stage and the booster. California’s Astra previously tried four orbital launches. Three failed, and one did not have a payload.
The latest failure sent Astra’s share price into freefall, ultimately closing 26% lower.
CubeSats can be small satellite payloads which are sent into space via rockets. “playing an increasingly larger role in exploration, technology demonstrations, scientific research, and educational investigations at NASA,”The agency.
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