The launch of a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket carrying the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 mission for NASA and NOAA is confirmed on the Western Range for Saturday, Nov. 18. The launch time is 1:47 a.m. PST (4:47 a.m. EST).
NOAA’s Joint Polar Satellite System-1 spacecraft will launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket from Space Launch Complex 2 at California’s Vandenberg Air Force Base. Launch managers are working to determine a launch date after today’s planned liftoff was scrubbed due to upper-level winds.
The launch of a United Launch Alliance Delta II carrying the JPSS-1 mission for NASA and NOAA was scrubbed today due to a red range and a late launch vehicle alarm. Due to the short window there was insufficient time to fully coordinate a resolution.
The launch is planned for Wednesday, Nov. 15, from Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The launch time is 1:47 a.m. PT.
The tower at Space Launch Complex 2 was rolled back late yesterday, leaving the United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket and NOAA’s JPSS-1 satellite poised for liftoff from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The ULA Delta II rocket carrying the JPSS-1 mission for NASA and NOAA is delayed due to a faulty battery. The delay allows the team time to replace the battery on the Delta II booster. The vehicle and spacecraft remain stable. Launch of the JPSS-1 mission is scheduled for no earlier than Tuesday, Nov. 14.
Mission and launch officials for NOAA’s Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1) have convened today at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California in preparation for the satellite’s upcoming launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket.
During its time in the Astrotech Payload Processing Facility, JPSS-1 has undergone a series of routine prelaunch tests and checkouts, followed by mating to the Payload Attach Fitting and transport to the launch pad, where the Delta II rocket stood already assembled. The spacecraft then was hoisted into position atop the rocket. Also installed were a trio of Poly-Picosat Orbital Deployers, or P-PODs, which will deploy a host of small CubeSat payloads after the JPSS-1 satellite is released to begin its mission. The entire payload has been enclosed within the two-piece fairing that will protect it during the climb to space.
With the challenges involved in space exploration, NASA understands the need to fill its workforce with innovative employees and to help them maximize their capabilities.
On Oct. 5, schools, organizations and individuals from around the globe participated in a special webcast to learn from NASA employees with disabilities who have found rewarding, successful careers in the space program, including the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month, and this year’s theme — “Inclusion Drives Innovation” — is exemplified by NASA.
“We need people of different backgrounds and different experiences to help create innovation to solve those challenging problems that will allow us to go to the Moon, Mars and beyond,” said Kennedy Space Center Associate Director Kelvin Manning.
Employees shared their backgrounds, challenges and triumphs in pursuit of their dreams, highlighting how they have pushed NASA to meet the needs of every individual.
“In all my life, I never imagined that I would be working for NASA. I have been here for 26 years and I can say how proud I am to work here,” said Nicole Delvesco, a NASA systems accountant. Delvesco is co-chair of Kennedy’s Disability Awareness and Action Working Group, currently in its 25th year at the spaceport. “The agency is wonderful about hiring people with disabilities, and helping people with disabilities so that they can be successful in their jobs.”
According to the final tally, there were 456 webcast views from 23 states, Washington, D.C., and eight countries. Using a standard classroom ratio, it’s estimated the event reached 11,400 people.
“The best part of this event was that most of the questions coming in were from students who had disabilities similar to our experts, who never thought NASA was within their reach,” said NASA Project Coordinator Bethanne Hull. “I am still in awe of the amazing people across our agency. We reached the audience we hoped to inspire.”
The annual 2017-2018 Fairchild Challenge Growing Beyond Earth recently kicked off at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Miami. For the past three years, plant researchers at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida have been partnering with Fairchild to create STEM-based challenges for teachers and students in the area. More than 130 middle and high school teachers participated in the opening workshop Sept. 30. Kennedy scientists Dr. Gioia Massa and Trent Smith taught teachers about food production in space and NASA’s Veggie plant growth system currently aboard the International Space Station.
Veggie is a system that allows astronauts to grow plants and crops — some of which they can eat. Veggie is an important demonstration of how NASA applies science across disciplines — in this case Space Biology to grow a healthy crop and Human Research to ensure astronauts remain healthy — to enable human space exploration.
At the end of the workshop, teachers received mini botany labs their students will use to participate in the project during the current school year. Each lab is meant to be managed like Veggie’s hardware on station. Students have to follow research protocols set forth by NASA and Fairchild while testing factors that could influence plant growth, flavor and nutrition — all so they can help NASA pick the next crops to grow for the astronauts aboard the station.
NOAA’s Joint Polar Satellite System-1 spacecraft has been removed from its shipping container in the Astrotech Payload Processing Facility at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, where it is being prepared for its upcoming launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket.
The JPSS-1 satellite will go through a series of routine inspections, checkouts and testing before it is sealed inside the payload fairing and placed atop the Delta II rocket, already standing at Space Launch Complex-2W. Launch remains scheduled for Nov. 10.
NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida is closing Friday, Sept. 8 through at least Monday, Sept. 11, due to the approach of Hurricane Irma. The storm currently is expected to make its closest approach to the Kennedy/Cape Canaveral Air Force Station area during the weekend. Currently a Category 5 hurricane, Irma could potentially bring heavy rain and strong winds to the spaceport.
Essential personnel will make final preparations to secure center facilities and infrastructure. After the storm has left the area, Kennedy’s Damage Assessment and Recovery Team will evaluate all center facilities and infrastructure for damage. The spaceport will reopen after officials determine it is safe for employees to return.