The National Reconnaissance Office is scheduled to launch the NROL-162 & 199 missions aboard a pair of Rocket Lab Electron rockets from Mahia Peninsula, New Zealand. These missions demonstrate NRO’s capability to launch multiple rockets from overseas locations back-to-back, and both carry national security payloads designed, built, and operated by NRO. NROL-162 & 199 are NRO’s third and fourth launch of 2022, and are part of more than a half-dozen planned launches for the year.

About the Mission Emblem

In the NROL-199 patch, the dingo is an Australian native mammal primarily located in northern Australia. It represents a small to medium-sized canine built for speed, agility, and stamina. These qualities are reflected in the payload to be launched. For the NRO, this launch will provide the capability to serve our current and future customers, and for the Australian Department of Defence, it builds on the opportunity to partner with an experienced space acquisition organization. Hence the Latin term, Ad Astra Per Aspera; “Through hardships to the Stars”

Launch Vehicle


Rocket Lab logo Electron is a two-stage rocket designed and manufactured by Rocket Lab for dedicated access to space of small satellites. This will be the 27th and 28th launch of the Electron rocket.

Rutherford Engine(s)

Proven performance. The world’s first 3D-printed, electric-pump-fed rocket engine.

First Stage

  • 9 Sea-level Rutherford Engines
  • Lift-off Thrust: 190 kN (43,000 lbf)
  • Peak Thrust: 224 kN (56,000 lbf)
  • ISP: 311 seconds


Pneumatic Pusher

Second Stage

  • Single Vacuum Rutherford Engine
  • Total Thrust: 25.8 kN (5,800 lbf)
  • ISP: 343 seconds

Kick Stage

Electron’s unique Kick Stage is designed to deliver small satellites to precise and unique orbits, whether flying as dedicated or rideshare.

  • Deployment of payloads at multiple planes/inclinations
  • Higher altitude deployment
  • Hosted payload support
  • Multiple trajectory changes
  • Sustained low altitude orbits
  • Deorbiting payloads to eliminate space debris

Site Info

Rocket Lab offers the world’s only private orbital launch range in Mahia, New Zealand. An FAA-licensed spaceport, Launch Complex 1 can provide up to 120 launch opportunities every year. From the site it is possible to reach orbital inclinations from sun-synchronous through to 30 degrees, enabling a wide spectrum of inclinations to service the majority of the satellite industry’s missions to low Earth orbit.

Electron Illustration
Download the NROL-199 Press Kit

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National Reconnaissance Office - Above and Beyond