Peter Beck: The Dreamer Behind the Inspirational Story of Rocket Lab13th Aug 2021
A small New Zealand space startup once, today Rocket Lab is a promising and reliable launch provider working with the government. So what does it mean to live a dream for its founder, Peter Beck, who creates spacecraft to travel around the universe?
For several years, Rocket Lab was doing just fine. But after an unfortunate launch this May, the company had to suspend rocket launches. Only recently, it has victoriously blasted a NASA satellite and is now waiting for a new NASA mission.
How Rocket Lab Started: New Zealand Space Pioneers
Such falls and rises must remind Peter Beck of the time when he was a small kid. He grew up in New Zealand, one of the most beautiful spots on Earth. Nobody could imagine that one day, rockets will start off that ground. But Peter wanted it to happen eagerly.
In 2006, Peter Beck started to fulfill his dreams and created Rocket Lab. But even after that, he constantly met people who wouldn’t believe in his idea of a space company in New Zealand. Maybe, from the industry’s point, they were right. So, seven years later, Rocket Lab headquarters moved to California.
Yet, in their Motherland, Rocket Lab built its own Launch Complex 1. Interestingly, ten years after Rocket Lab was founded, New Zealand created its own Space Agency.
The Present of Beck’s Company
From this complex, an Electron rocket will bring a NASA satellite to Moon orbit in the last quarter of this year. The CAPSTONE mission, which stands for Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment, will study the elliptic orbit and prepare the gateway for upcoming lunar missions.
What Are Peter Beck’s Plans for the Future He Creates with His Own Hands?
Hopefully, it will be a success, even though there have been several difficulties on Rocket Lab’s way to the Moon, i.e., searching for the right location and Blue Origin’s attempts to block the contract. Peter Beck has shared his plans.
He told Al-Jazeera about his next stops in space: Mars and Venus. Venus has always fascinated the entrepreneur with the possibility for life present there. And Mars inspires in him a desire to see humans walking its surface. Besides, Beck mentions that it would be a significant contribution to science to discover how this planet became what it is.
And it’s not just a thought. Rocket Lab has signed a NASA ESCAPADE mission contract. They will fly two twin spacecraft to orbit Mars and try to learn how it lost its atmosphere, which is one of the mysterious changes in our solar system.
Besides, following Elon Musk’s SpaceX example, Rocket Lab has started to work on a reusable rocket. It will be a well-known Electron with some improvements. It won’t land on its own like Falcon 9. But it will have a parachute used by a helicopter to catch the rocket in midair. Rocket Lab is also developing a bigger rocket, the Neutron, to start its history of human flights.