First Interplanetary Launch from West Coast
NASA's next mission to the Red Planet will be the topic of a media briefing at 2 p.m. PDT (5 p.m. EDT) Thursday, March 29, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. The briefing will air live on NASA Television and the agency's website.
NASA's Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) lander will study the deep interior of Mars to learn how all rocky planets formed, including Earth and its moon. The lander's instruments include a seismometer to detect marsquakes and a probe that will monitor the flow of heat in the planet's subsurface.
Briefing participants will be:
- Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington
- Bruce Banerdt, InSight principal investigator at JPL
- Tom Hoffman, InSight project manager at JPL
- Jaime Singer, InSight instrument deployment lead at JPL
Media and the public may ask questions on social media during the briefing using #asknasa.
InSight will be the first planetary spacecraft to take off from the West Coast. It's scheduled to launch May 5 aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex-3 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. If pre-dawn skies are clear, the launch will be visible from Santa Maria to San Diego, California.
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News Media ContactAndrew Good
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
NASA Headquarters, Washington