Status Report

NASA Expendable Launch Vehicle Status Report 6 Feburary 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
February 7, 2009
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Mission: NOAA-N Prime
Launch Vehicle: Delta II 7320
Launch Pad: Space Launch Complex 2, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.
Launch Date: Feb. 6, 2009
Launch Time: 2:22 a.m. PST

The United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket carrying the NOAA-N Prime weather satellite launched at 2:22 a.m. PST after two consecutive days of launch scrubs. The satellite successfully separated from the rocket’s second stage 65 minutes after launch. NOAA-N Prime now is in its circular polar orbit about 534 miles, or 464 nautical miles, above Earth.

Mission: Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO)
Launch Vehicle: Taurus XL (Orbital Sciences)
Launch Pad: Space Launch Complex 576-E, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.
Launch Date: Feb. 23, 2009
Launch Time: 1:51 a.m. PST (7 min., 30 sec. launch window)

The OCO spacecraft is being mated to the payload attach fitting Friday. Encapsulating the spacecraft into the fairing halves begins this weekend with the first half on Feb. 7 and the second half on Feb. 9. OCO will then go to the launch pad on Feb. 10.

The upper launch vehicle stack, consisting of Taurus stages 1, 2 and 3, was transported to the launch pad on Feb. 3, joining Stage 0. Technicians plan to integrate the encapsulated OCO spacecraft with the Taurus third stage on Feb. 13. Finally, the payload/upper launch vehicle integrated stack is set to be hoisted atop Stage 0 on Feb. 16.

Taurus Flight Simulation No. 3 currently is planned for Feb. 11.

Mission: Kepler
Launch Vehicle: Delta II 7925
Launch Pad: 17-B, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.
Launch Date: March 5, 2009
Launch Time: 10:48:43 p.m. EDT

Spacecraft fueling operations are set for this weekend. Attaching Kepler to the upper stage booster is scheduled for Feb. 16. Installing the integrated stack into the transportation canister and placing it on the payload transporter are scheduled for the following day. Kepler will be moved to Launch Complex 17 on Feb. 19 to be mated to the Delta II rocket on Pad 17-B.

Previous status reports are available at:

SpaceRef staff editor.