- Press Release
- Dec 6, 2022
A United launch Alliance Atlas V 401 rocket soars upward after liftoff from Space Launch Complex 3 at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California on Nov. 10, carrying the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Joint Polar Satellite System-2 (JPSS-2) and NASA’s Low-Earth Orbit Flight Test of an Inflatable Decelerator (LOFTID) technology demonstration.
Launch was at 1:49 a.m. PST. JPSS-2 is the third satellite in the polar satellite series and is expected to capture data to improve weather forecasts, helping scientists predict and prepare for extreme weather events and climate change. After JPSS-2 safely reaches orbit, LOFTID will follow a re-entry trajectory from low-Earth orbit to demonstrate the inflatable heat shield’s ability to slow down and survive re-entry. LOFTID is a partnership with ULA and is dedicated to the memory of Bernard Kutter, one of the company’s engineers who played a key role in developing the technology.
LOFTID will demonstrate how the inflatable aeroshell, or heat shield, can slow down and survive re-entry in conditions relevant to many potential applications, whether landing humans on Mars, new missions to Venus and Titan, or returning heavier payloads and samples from low-Earth orbit
NASA ID: KSC-20221110-PH-RNB01_0001 larger image