ABL Space Systems, a small-satellite launch startup aiming to debut on rockets, on Monday (Nov. 21) aborted its third launch attempt in less than a week.
The the planned launch of the RS1 rocket, which was targeted at 5:32 p.m. EST (10:32 p.m. GMT) from the Pacific Spaceport on Kodiak Island, Alaska, came to rest less than 2 seconds after liftoff, the California-based company said. The next launch opportunity will be December 7.
“RS1 aborted during ignition at T-1.75s. The vehicle is in good working order and the team is preparing to unload the fuel for today,” ABL Space Systems representatives wrote. Twitter update (opens in a new tab). “Our next launch window opens on December 7th.” The company did not give an exact reason for the interruption.
Monday’s failure was the third aborted ABL Space Systems launch since Nov. 17, when the first launch attempt was made ended with a break while starting the engine. Assassination on Saturday (November 19) also ended with a break 1.8 seconds before launch due to a problem with the engine’s turbo pump, the company said. An attempt to launch the mission on November 14 was also cleared due to a leaking valve (opens in a new tab).
ABL Space Systems, based in El Segundo, California, was founded in 2017 to build the RS1 rocket, an 88-foot (27-meter) launch vehicle capable of carrying satellites and payloads weighing up to 2,975 pounds (1,350 kilograms) into low Earth orbit. Each mission will cost about $12 million.
For its debut flight, the RS1 rocket carries two small cubesats called VariSat-1A and VariSat-1B, each about the size of a shoebox. The two satellites are designed to test maritime data operations for VariSat LLC.
Write to Tariq Malik at firstname.lastname@example.org (opens in a new tab) or follow him @tariqjmalik (opens in a new tab). Follow us @Spacedotcom (opens in a new tab), Facebook (opens in a new tab) and Instagram (opens in a new tab).
https://www.space.com/abl-space-systems-rocket-launch-3rd-abort Rocket startup ABL Space Systems has aborted its third launch attempt in a week