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Virgin Orbit's first rocket launch fails over Pacific Ocean



Virgin Orbit, British billionaire Richard Branson's satellite launch company, confirmed on Monday that its first test launch of a new rocket had failed over the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of the US state of California. The rocket was carrying a test satellite.

The company said that the LauncherOne rocket faced an "anomaly" in the first stage of the flight, right after it was dropped from the refitted carrier Boeing 747 the company calls "Cosmic Girl." Virgin Orbit didn't reveal further details about the anomaly. 

The rocket has been in development for five years, as Virgin tries to master sending satellites into earth orbits by launching them on a rocket mounted on the underside of an airborne jumbo jet.Virgin Orbit said that it would use the data from the launch for future operations. "Our next rocket is waiting. We will learn, adjust and begin preparing for our next test, which is coming up soon", Dan Hart, the company's chief executive, said in a press release.

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