Nanosat launch provider, Vector has secured a five-launch contract with space mission provider, Open Cosmos. The five-launch reservation will be utilised by Open Cosmos as the launch facet of mission solutions the company offers its customers.
“This agreement with Open Cosmos continues our ongoing efforts to partner with a broad network of customers,” said Vector CEO and co-founder, Jim Cantrell. “Open Cosmos’ mission to provide simple and affordable access to space is one that very closely aligns with Vector’s, and we look forward to having them along our journey as we continue breaking down the barriers to access space faced by many.”
The five orbital launches for Open Cosmos will be scheduled between 2019 and 2023.
The Vector-R has yet to reach orbit and has currently only completed a low altitude launch test in May 2017. The rocket’s first orbital launch test is scheduled for July 2018. Late last year, Vector secured a contract with the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) in Virginia to launch three Vector-R rockets. Presumably one of those launches will be the upcoming orbital test.
Expecting a successful launch in July, Vector has already begun planning the construction of a “state-of-the-art rocket factory” near their headquarters in Arizona.
The Vector-R Launch Vehicle
The Vector-R is a diminutive launch vehicle weighing in at just 5,000 kilograms with a diameter of 1.2 meters. At launch, the three LP-1 first stage engines are capable of 81.4 kN (18300 lbf) of thrust. The single LP-2 second stage engine is capable of deploying a 66-kilogram payload into orbit with 4.4 kN (1000 lbf) of thrust.
Image Credit: Vector