Satellite launch service provider Virgin Orbit has safely terminated the first launch demo of its LauncherOne rocket.

During the demonstration, the two-stage orbital rocket was to be released by a 747 carrier aircraft named Cosmic Girl.

All of its pre-launch procedures, including the captive carry flight out to the drop site, clean telemetry lock from multiple dishes, a smooth pass through the racetrack, terminal count, and a clean release, were completed successfully.

The mission was safely terminated shortly after being released from the carrier aircraft, as an anomaly occurred early in first stage flight.

Cosmic Girl and all of its crew landed safely at Mojave Air and Space Port following the termination.

Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart said: “Our team performed their prelaunch and flight operations with incredible skill today. Test flights are instrumented to yield data and we now have a treasure trove of that. We accomplished many of the goals we set for ourselves, though not as many as we would have liked.

“Nevertheless, we took a big step forward today.  Our engineers are already pouring through the data. Our next rocket is waiting. We will learn, adjust, and begin preparing for our next test, which is coming up soon.”

Virgin Orbit’s next rocket is in final stages of integration at its Long Beach manufacturing facility, along with half-a-dozen additional rockets for future missions.

Last November, Virgin Orbit UK received £7.35m ($9.4m) in funding to support the horizontal launch of small satellites from Cornwall Airport Newquay.