By RNZ

New Zealand-founded company Rocket Lab has lost a rocket during its latest launch off the Mahia Peninsula on the East Coast this morning.

Seven satellites from Japan, the US and the UK lifted off around 9.20am - a day earlier than planned because of bad weather due later this week.

However, Rocket Lab said a problem occurred late in the flight during the second stage burn and the Electron rocket was lost.

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It is apologising to customers that had satellites on board Electron.

The launch included a 67kg earth-imaging satellite for Canon Electronics to photograph objects on the ground as small as 90cm wide.

It also included five shoebox-sized Earth observation satellites, for the San Francisco company Planet, which already has a fleet 120 of them.