Rocketlab to be considered a New Zealand (Kiwi) launch


Not too different to companies registering in the Cayman Isles etc for tax purposes. You could argue they are Cayman companies but we all know whats going on really.


Sounds like something that should be in a thread or website section … Will be willing to code once I have the current project sorted if no-one else wants to grab it.


It’s Britian and Canadian satellite companies using foreign launchers that confuses the issue. For years Britians policy was that satellites will not catch on.

Richard Brasons Virgin galactic are based in the virgin islands, are a marketing publicity stunt for the airline.


An expensive one. Perhaps some add slots would be better bang for his bucks.


Branson’s got 50 old jumbos that could be used for launching. If he starts in New Zealand, Britian, Virgin Islands. It will confuse flag wavers.


Personally, it does not matter to me is Rocketlab’s launches should be considered as a New Zealand or USA.
Of course, it’s fun to watch which country will launch the largest amount of rockets a year. So it can be simplified a lot. From which country soil does it launch and which country are responsible. If two or more. Then just count for all of them +1. :sunglasses:


Yup, Roger right. If we want to dig even deeper it turns out that every rocket can be counted as 10+, 50+…countries launch. Also due to the fact that every part in a rocket can be produced in different part of Earth. Or even materials are from different countries as well.

p.s. my previous offer has one drawback. The final number of launches would be higher than real. But does it matter ? The winner will be the same.


A while back I learned to simplify. Simplify something (an idea, a web-page, a conversation, a choice, etc), and it is much more likely to be embraced and adopted. I suggest we simplify this topic, and move forward. My thoughts:

  • The TMRO launch list is just for fun. It is not official.
  • It is quite natural for different people to have different interpretations for metrics. But… bottom line… it is not important. (Years ago a friend told me something like: “we are wasting our time arguing how many angels fit on the head of pin”).
  • What is important: Using any method TMRO decides to slice-and-dice the launches, the important aspect is that China is extending quite strongly, certain Launch Companies are waning or growing, and that exciting new players are emerging to play a good role in the future (eg: India). This industry is in flux, and having any metric is quite interesting for us Crazy-Space-Geeks to watch. I feel THAT might be closer to the purpose of TMRO keeping track of launches in the first place.
  • The TMRO Community has weighed in on this topic (BTW… it should not be lost on TMRO Directors that the subtle result of all this is that TMRO has succeeded in building an interactive aspect of a vibrant community!)
  • One possible next step is for the TMRO Directors to make a decision (I think we heard they already did after they considered this off-air), the Community will accept it as final (for now) and then for all of us Citizens to continue the exciting fun of watching the Launch industry grow and position humanity for the future.
  • I for one accept any decision on metrics made by TMRO Directors.

In a strange previous life I was responsible to, a) bring certain forum-discussions to a constructive and productive close, while b) making sure a meaningful deliverable (eg: reusable company knowledge) squirted out from the process. Those dormant brain cells suddenly re-ignited on this thread, and I hope no one is angry with me. This is one of those threads that could go on forever with no productive outcome. So… I am not trying to stop this discussion; just to add perspective and a way forward. Let’s continue geeking-out (yikes, I have never actually said that phrase in my entire life) over whatever launch metrics TMRO uses.

Idea: An online, filterable list of Launches (able to be sliced any way a Citizen desires) available from the web site. This could be just a minor tweak/update to the existing Launch Library The (uses the Launch Library API?) might be close to that too. You know, one click, and things (future or historical) are automatically filtered by a particular metric. And TMRO could even point people there during the show!


This is something I would like to build … but first the slides (see other thread) unless anyone else wants to grab the idea.

As for this could go on forever … it could but at the same time it is something that can be discussed / argued without causing insult to anyone (So Far At Least) and lets face it we all occasionally like an argument / discussion for the sake of it. This thread is also a good example to new / potential members on how a discussion can be had without offence on either / any side I almost want to see it continue just to see how long it runs for :stuck_out_tongue:


I would be in favour of counting Rocketlab launches (at least the ones from New Zealand) for New Zealand. I think it does matter that it was founded by a New Zealander, is mostly made in New Zealand and has its launch center there.

As for the company now having a US parent company and an FAA certification, I think we are all aware that those things are heavily related to ITAR issues. In other words, if you want to launch in the US or for US customers you have to be American, if only formally.

Of course a contrary argument would be that Rocketlab also relies on the US workforce available in aerospace and builds at least parts of their rockets in the US.

However, having just mentioned the ITAR issue, a very restrictive set of rules no other Spacefaring nation has, thus counting Rocketlab launches for the US after having obliged the company to play according to these US rules just doesnt sit right with me as a non US community member.

So I dont have an answer here same as I’m not unambiguous about ESA Soyuz launches but what about counting at least the former ones (Rocketlab launches) once for New Zealand and once for the US? We can then still deduct the double counts in the grand total of successfull orbital launches. I believe that would do everybody justice…


I realize how everyone can see how passionate I am… and Ive always tried arguing the point not the person… i hope it come across that way.
And I realize for some people that its pointless. Its a somewhat rough guide on a small show on the internet… i.e theres bigger things to worry about.

When you come from a small country at the bottom of the world, from a country that has almost 1/40th the population of the USA, a country that has almost 1/100th of the GDP of USA. We are now currently one of i think 7 space fairing nations. This would be something anyone would be proud of. For me this is a company who is proudly NZ and USA. I could imagine the same reaction from alot of Americans if it went the other way. We are both proud people…

Thats why i wanted to open this chat. Not to nail anyone who thought differently but to have it seen from another point of view. Like some people have mentioned.

  • Some American companies have registered holding in the Cayman islands. Does that make them Cayman.
  • Tesla is about to start manufacturing in China. Does that mean those car’s manufactured there are Chinese? Maybe. But would it still be an classed an American car, just manufactured in China?
  • Using parts from around the world… Most car companies like Ford use parts from China and Japan. Does that mean Ford is 1/12th Chinese and 1/25th Japanese?
  • Controlled by the FAA… if Spacex also launched in China and under the Chinese ‘FAA’, would you consider them Chinese launches. Even though Spacex is American company flying an American rocket.

In the future with more private companies and small sat launches, having different graphs and metrics would make sense. At present we are sort of in this weird transistion phase. I fully understand what the TMRO team are trying to show with the information and I dont want it taken away either; I think we all like the fight for which country will top the table.
As Freda said above… I’d agree with any decision Ben, Carrann and the team makes. Haha- Might not sound it at present… But as an avid watcher and patreon supporter of this show, it would ‘grind my gears’ each time it pops up without saying my bit and trying to have it seen from another prospective.


Speaking of counting launches… (using Launch Library API, but probably not an official count.) indicates 10 (8 USA + 2 Rocketlab) more USA launches in 2018, and only 4 China launches in 2018. But sometimes those China launches sneak in unannounced.

If true, this could affect the outcome of the $1 bet. :smiley:



Rocketlab flies under the authority of the United States.


It’s very important to know that carbon fiber works with cryo O2. Proven :wink:


With Electron rockets now launching, should we be giving them their own category being a cube sat launcher. Why are they in the same category as heavy launch rockets? With new cube sat launchers coming, the tally of launches will be pointless soon.

PS Rocketlab is a Kiwi launcher.