UPDATE – Rocket Lab announced that the “Virginia is for Launch Lovers” mission won’t launch Monday “due to continued strong upper-level winds forecast.”

“We’re assessing remaining opportunities for launch this month before holiday airspace restrictions prevent further launch attempts in Dec.,” the company tweeted.


RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — People along the East Coast could catch a glimpse of Rocket Lab’s first Electron rocket launch from U.S. soil, which could lift off from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia during a two-hour window Monday.

The launch window for the “Virginia is for Launch Lovers” mission, which has been delayed before, is 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The 59-foot-tall Electron rocket will take off from Rocket Lab’s Launch Complex 2 at Virginia Space’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport within the Wallops facility.

The mission

The mission will deploy three satellites for HawkEye 360, a radio frequency data analytics company based in Virginia, and is the first of three Rocket Lab launches for the company.

Rocket Lab USA, a launch and space systems company, is set to carry 15 satellites for HawkEye 360 to low Earth orbit between late 2022 and 2024.

“These missions will grow HawkEye 360’s constellation of radio frequency monitoring satellites, enabling the company to better deliver precise geolocation of radio frequency emissions anywhere in the world,” Rocket Lab said in a press release ahead of the mission.

Where to watch

According to NASA, if the weather permits Monday, the launch could be seen by residents throughout much of the East Coast.

A live webcast of the launch will be available about 40 minutes before the rocket lifts off.

There are viewing options available for the launch, including locations such as Robert Reed Park on Main Street or Beach Road spanning the area between Chincoteague and Assateague islands.

NASA’s Visitor Center at Wallops will be open for the launch, and the Atlantic beaches of Virginia, Maryland and Delaware could also be a good option to see the launch. Here are the places to watch that NASA suggests:

  • Wallops Visitor Center
  • Chincoteague Island
  • Assateague Island National Seashore – Maryland
  • Ocean City, Maryland
  • Delaware Seashore
  • Virginia Beach