Virgin Orbit Plans for Second Launch After Failed Attempt

Francesca Billington

Francesca Billington is a freelance reporter. Prior to that, she was a general assignment reporter for dot.LA and has also reported for KCRW, the Santa Monica Daily Press and local publications in New Jersey. She graduated from Princeton in 2019 with a degree in anthropology.

Virgin Orbit Plans for Second Launch After Failed Attempt

Virgin Orbit announced plans for its second attempt to shoot its LauncherOne rocket into orbit on Dec. 19 carrying with it small NASA research satellites. The first attempt failed in May after a propellant line ruptured after the first-stage ignition.

The Richard Branson-founded company said it's run a list of tests and upgraded various systems in advance of next month's launch.


A Virgin Orbit carrier aircraft will take off from Mojave Air and Space Port in California and travel for about 45 minutes before releasing the rocket over the ocean. The launch is scheduled between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. PST.

The two-stage rocket was designed to carry satellites into low earth orbit. All 10 payloads set to be ferried into orbit were designed by U.S. universities working with NASA, including a rocket equipped with a space weather platform built by engineers at California Polytechnic University in San Luis Obispo.

If conditions delay the launch, Virgin has backup windows on Dec. 20 and later in the month.

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.

Cadence

Meet NASA's Newest Robotic Arm that Could Change How We View Our Moon

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

Meet NASA's Newest Robotic Arm that Could Change How We View Our Moon

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory churns out no shortage of neat science – from the Ingenuity Mars helicopter to the Perseverance Rover and ARTEMIS, but a new project could be their most innovative to date.

Read moreShow less

LA’s Newest E-Scooter Startup Was Founded and Funded By a City Native. Can It Compete with Its Deep-Pocketed Rivals?

Maylin Tu
Maylin Tu is a freelance writer who lives in L.A. She writes about scooters, bikes and micro-mobility. Find her hovering by the cheese at your next local tech mixer.
Yahya Dabbagh
Image by Maylin Tu

Yahya Dabbagh isn’t your typical micromobility startup CEO.

For one, he takes a personal approach to customer service. When he feels a rider is trying to game the system by reporting a scooter broken, in order to earn a free unlock (valued at $1), Dabbagh sometimes will call them up.

Read moreShow less

This Year’s Techstars’ Demo Day Included Robot Bartenders and Towable Rockets

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

This Year’s Techstars’ Demo Day Included Robot Bartenders and Towable Rockets
Andria Moore

On Wednesday, Techstars’ fall 2022 class gathered in Downtown Los Angeles to pitch their products to potential investors in hopes of securing their next big funding round. dot.LA co-sponsored the demo day presentation alongside Venice-based space news website Payload.

Read moreShow less
RELATEDEDITOR'S PICKS
LA TECH JOBS
interchangeLA
Trending