Late last year the Chamber team were asked if we would like to visit the Rocket Lab site in Mahia for a look around, the answer to that as a team was hell yes! A Spotify playlist was formed, and early January, we took off on our road trip.
The day was exceptional. The beauty of the day, the beauty and remoteness of the site.
Our Rocket Lab tour began with a safety briefing. We then watched a presentation that allowed us to get a grasp of where Rocket Lab started, where they are now, and what their intentions are for the future. Following on with Chuck, Rocket Labs Operational Manager, giving us an unrestricted look around the secure facility.
A few of the things that I found interesting is from take-off to their targeted location is only eight minutes. The placement of the said payload is within 1.5 kilometres of the desired location, and the size of the payloads they’re sending are approximately the size of a shoebox.
Rocket Lab is currently scheduled to send one rocket per month, although they are busy building a second launch site, which will allow them to send one per fortnight. Each of these rockets is constructed in three sections, with the top two parts being made in Mahia and the bottom (the most substantial piece) being transported monthly from Auckland.
For one week a month, the 17 full-time Mahia site employees are joined with an additional 20 staff that travel from Auckland for the launch. It was very apparent when talking with the team that they live and breathe their jobs.
A stimulating, thought-provoking day and an experience I won’t soon forget.
A very big thank you to Rocket Lab and especially Chuck for an exceptional day.