Way to go!
The more the merrier
EDIT: even though the merger makes, technically, less, I was referring to competition in space launch capability
Small-satellite flinger Rocket Lab today confirmed a merger with Vector Acquisition Corporation, as well as plans for a considerably heftier launcher. The merger, which the New Zealand rocket maker said gives the combined entity a "implied pro forma enterprise value of $4.1 billion", will have woken up the bean counters. …
Rocket Lab already has an impressive record but the valuation seems trivial compared with more PR-savvy companies with US govt contracts in their pockets. It's a pity because it makes them easier targets – Elon probably only needs to flutter his eyelashes if he wants to do a buyout – but it probably also means they can just get on with their job.
"...will have woken up the bean counters..."
Really ⁈ REALLY ‽ What the bloody hell is going on here...
One would think that even the most basic education in the proper use of English grammar would dictate that this be phrased as
"...will have awakened the bean counters...", or
"...will have wakened the bean counters...".
Editorial oversight? What's that?
... because, quite apart from the effect on astronomy and, eventually, on other launches, they are incredibly wasteful of resources.
Think about it: an LEO satellite has a lifetime of around a year, after which it burns up in the atmosphere and must be replaced. The materials used to make the satellite and its electronics, some of which are quite rare while even the copper and gold used for PCBs and contacts are not exactly common, are completely lost since, on re-entry, the entire thing is reduced to tiny, unrecoverable pieces in the upper atmosphere.
By comparison, the unthinking fat cat who, 'because he can', buys a new iPhone every year and landfills the old one is a paragon of materials thrift. Why? Because the location of landfill sites are known. They can, and will be, mined for their more valuable content. This will be recovered and reused: a landfill could easily have a higher concentration of the many of the commercially useful rare elements than the mines they are currently extracted from.
This rant was inspired by today's 'Life Scientific' on Radio 4 - an interview with Sarah Bridle, a data scientist who has found the skills she developed searching for dark matter and dark energy are equally useful for dealing with the effect of food production on global warming. Its available from BBC Sounds and is worthwhile listening to.
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