Status Report

Launch of Kodiak Star Postponed Due to Solar Flare

By SpaceRef Editor
September 24, 2001
Filed under ,

The launch of Kodiak Star has been postponed for at least an additional 24
hours. A solar flare of significant magnitude occurred this morning at 7a.m
ADT (11 a.m. EDT) producing a “proton flux” exceeding the allowable launch
criteria for the Athena I. These high levels of charged particles can cause
a “data upset” in the launch vehicle guidance system affecting its
reliability.

The data from today’s solar flare was observed by the NOAA GOES-8 weather
satellite with the capability to monitor solar weather. The levels
monitored are approximately three times the allowable launch criteria. The
proton flux is expected to decrease slowly but may take 48 hours to be
within allowable limits.

Yesterday, work was completed to remove and replace a encoder unit on a down
range C-band radar at Cordova, AK necessary for Range Safety tracking of the
Athena I. The radar has been successfully retested and is ready to support
the next Kodiak Star launch attempt.

SpaceRef staff editor.