Press Release

NASA Nanosatellite Live Launch Event Features Webcast, Experts

By SpaceRef Editor
May 1, 2009
Filed under ,

News media and the public are invited to observe the live webcast of the launch of NASA’s nanosatellite, known as PharmaSat, in the Exploration Center at NASA Ames Research Center. PharmaSat is scheduled to launch at 5 p.m. PDT on Tuesday, May 5 from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport located at Wallops Island, Va.

PharmaSat is a secondary payload aboard a U.S. Air Force four-stage Minotaur 1 rocket and weighs approximately 10 pounds. It contains a micro-laboratory packed with sensors that can detect the growth and health of yeast cells and transmit data to scientists for analysis on Earth. Scientists will study how the yeast responds during and after an antifungal treatment is administered to learn more about drug effectiveness in space.

In addition to the webcast, Macarena Parra, PharmaSat project scientist, and Mike McIntyre, PharmaSat software systems manager, will discuss what scientists expect to learn from the mission and how small autonomous satellites can enable a new way of conducting science experiments in space. They also will talk about NASA Ames’ work with small satellites and why NASA is interested in using these spacecraft for future missions.

WHAT: An opportunity to watch the live webcast of the launch of NASA’s PharmaSat nanosatellite and hear presentations to learn more about the PharmaSat mission.

WHEN: The pre-launch program will begin at 4:30 p.m. PDT, Tuesday, May 5, 2009. The U.S. Air Force has announced that the rocket could launch at any time during a three-hour launch window beginning at 5 p.m. PDT. The Exploration Center will close 30 minutes after launch.

WHERE: NASA Ames’ Exploration Center, located at the main gate, Moffett Field. To reach NASA Ames, take U.S. Highway 101 to the Moffett Field, NASA Parkway exit and drive east on Moffett Boulevard towards the main gate and bear right into the parking lot. The Exploration Center is located in the large white dome.

For information about PharmaSat, visit:

To view the launch via webcast, visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.