NASA's Aquarius/SAC-D Launch Rescheduled

NASA's Aquarius spacecraft inside the mobile service tower at Vandenberg Inside the mobile service tower at Space Launch Complex-2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, NASA’s Aquarius spacecraft is secure inside the United Launch Alliance’s Delta II payload fairing. Image credit: NASA/VAFB
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June 08, 2011

PASADENA, Calif. -- The launch of the international Aquarius/SAC-D mission is postponed 24 hours until Friday, June 10, from NASA's Space Launch Complex-2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The 5-minute launch window opens at 7:20 a.m. PDT (10:20 a.m. EDT).

The new launch date will allow the launch team to complete additional review of an inconsistency found in the Delta II launch vehicle flight profile for wind conditions on the day of launch. These data are used to steer the Delta II through upper level winds. The weather forecast for June 10 shows a 100 percent chance of favorable weather conditions for the launch.

The Aquarius/SAC-D (Satelite de Aplicaciones Cientificas) observatory is a collaboration between NASA and Argentina's space agency, Comision Nacional de Actividades Espaciales (CONAE).

Media are invited to see and photograph the Delta II with Aquarius/SAC-D at the launch pad on Thursday, June 9. Media will depart for the pad at 9:30 p.m. PDT from the Vandenberg Main Gate on California State Road 1.

Media covering the launch on Friday, June 10, will be escorted to the press viewing site from the Vandenberg Main Gate. Media should meet at 6 a.m. PDT at the pass and identification building.

Aquarius was built by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., and the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. NASA's Launch Services Program at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida manages the launch. JPL will manage Aquarius through its commissioning phase and archive mission data. Goddard will manage Aquarius mission operations and process science data. CONAE is providing the SAC-D spacecraft, optical camera, thermal camera with Canada, microwave radiometer, sensors from various Argentine institutions and the mission operations center. France and Italy also are contributing instruments.

On launch day, June 10, NASA TV commentary coverage of the countdown will begin at 5:30 a.m. PDT (8:30 a.m. EDT). Launch coverage will be streamed live at: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv.

For more information about Aquarius/SAC-D, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/aquarius. JPL is managed for NASA by the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

Alan Buis 818-354-0474
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
Alan.buis@jpl.nasa.gov

Steve Cole 202-358-0918
NASA Headquarters, Washington
Stephen.e.cole@nasa.gov

George Diller 805-605-3051
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
george.h.diller@nasa.gov

2011-175



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