Rocket Lab will launch its 1st mission from new pad today. Here's how to watch live

Rocket Lab is ready to launch the first mission from its newly built pad in New Zealand on Monday (Feb. 28), and you can watch the event live.

The window for the mission, dubbed "The Owl's Night Continues," opens at 3:35 p.m. EST (2035 GMT) on Monday. You can watch it live here at, courtesy of Rocket Lab, or directly via the company.

The mission plan calls for a Rocket Lab Electron launcher to heft a Strix Earth-observation satellite into orbit for the Japanese company Synspective. Rocket Lab will be using the newly completed Pad B at its New Zealand launch complex, which lies on the North Island's Mahia Peninsula.

In a statement, the company said that it has two more launches for Synspective lined up after this one — another one in 2022 and a third in 2023.

Related: Rocket Lab and its Electron booster (photos)

Rocket Lab's Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand, with Pad A and the newly completed Pad B. (Image credit: Rocket Lab)

Each mission, Rocket Lab stated, will loft a single Strix satellite to orbit. Strix spacecraft study Earth using synthetic aperture radar (SAR), which can look through clouds to see the surface of the planet during daytime or nighttime passes. Strix craft are meant to detect "millimeter-level changes" to Earth's surface between passes, Rocket Lab said.

The mission name, "The Owl's Night Continues," is a playful reference to Rocket Lab's first launch for Synspective in December 2020 that launched the Strix-α satellite. That 2020 mission was called "The Owl's Night Begins." (Strix is a diverse and widespread genus of owls.)

The Strix-α mission, Rocket Lab added, was "the first spacecraft in Synspective’s planned constellation of more than 30 SAR satellites, designed to collate data of metropolitan centers on a daily basis to support urban development planning, construction and infrastructure monitoring and disaster response."

The 59-foot-tall (18 meters) Electron gives small satellites dedicated rides to orbit, as opposed to sharing a ride on a larger rocket. Electron has been quite prolific in recent years, and Rocket Lab says Pad B will allow for even more launches in the years to come. 

Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook. 

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at:

Elizabeth Howell
Staff Writer, Spaceflight

Elizabeth Howell (she/her), Ph.D., is a staff writer in the spaceflight channel since 2022 covering diversity, education and gaming as well. She was contributing writer for for 10 years before joining full-time. Elizabeth's reporting includes multiple exclusives with the White House and Office of the Vice-President of the United States, an exclusive conversation with aspiring space tourist (and NSYNC bassist) Lance Bass, speaking several times with the International Space Station, witnessing five human spaceflight launches on two continents, flying parabolic, working inside a spacesuit, and participating in a simulated Mars mission. Her latest book, "Why Am I Taller?", is co-written with astronaut Dave Williams. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, a Bachelor of Journalism from Canada's Carleton University and a Bachelor of History from Canada's Athabasca University. Elizabeth is also a post-secondary instructor in communications and science at several institutions since 2015; her experience includes developing and teaching an astronomy course at Canada's Algonquin College (with Indigenous content as well) to more than 1,000 students since 2020. Elizabeth first got interested in space after watching the movie Apollo 13 in 1996, and still wants to be an astronaut someday. Mastodon: