Virginia

Sounding rocket launch scrubbed due to boats in hazard area, NASA says

WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. - Sunday's launch of a Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket scheduled from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility was postponed due to boats in the launch range hazard area, NASA officials say.

In a press release sent Sunday evening, officials with the NASA Wallops Flight Facility explain it impacted the ability to test a new ampoule ejection system for supporting studies of the ionosphere and aurora.

The launch has been rescheduled for Monday, June 12 with a launch window between 9:04 p.m. and 9:19 p.m. EDT.

This was the fifth launch attempt for this mission.

We're told previous attempts have scrubbed for reasons including high winds, clouds in the area leading to poor science conditions, and boats in the hazard area.

The multi-canister ampoule ejection system flying on this mission will allow scientists to gather information over a much larger area than previously able.

Canisters will deploy between four and five-and-a-half minutes after launch releasing blue-green and red vapor to form artificial clouds. These clouds, or vapor tracers, allow scientists on the ground to visually track particle motions in space. The clouds may be visible along the mid-Atlantic coastline from New York to North Carolina.

The NASA Visitor Center at Wallops will open at 8 p.m. on launch day for viewing the flight. 

Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 8:30 p.m. on the Wallops Ustream site. Launch updates also are available via the Wallops Facebook and Twitter sites.

 


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