Glory, glory, hallelujah – twice delayed three’s a charm?

NASA’s Glory Satellite scheduled for launch March 4

The Taurus XL rocket stands on Space Launch Complex 576-E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Credit: NASA/Randy Beaudoin, VAFB

WASHINGTON — NASA’s Glory spacecraft is scheduled for launch on Friday, March 4. Technical issues with ground support equipment for the Taurus XL launch vehicle led to the scrub of the original Feb. 23 launch attempt. Those issues have been resolved.

The March 4 liftoff from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., is targeted for 5:09:43 a.m. EST, in the middle of a 48-second launch window. Spacecraft separation occurs 13 minutes after launch.

Data from the Glory mission will allow scientists to better understand how the sun and tiny atmospheric particles called aerosols affect Earth’s climate. The Taurus XL also carries the first of NASA’s Educational Launch of Nanosatellite missions. This auxiliary payload contains three small satellites called CubeSats, which were designed and created by university and college students.

NASA Television will carry launch coverage beginning March 4 at 3:30 a.m. EST. This coverage will be streamed live online at:

http://www.nasa.gov/ntv

Real-time updates of countdown and launch milestones will be posted on NASA’s launch blog beginning March 4 at 3:30 a.m. EST at:

http://www.nasa.gov/glory

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19 thoughts on “Glory, glory, hallelujah – twice delayed three’s a charm?

  1. As long as the instruments aren’t fiddled with the bias the findings, it has all been built, let’s launch this rocket!

  2. Nice to see someone at NASA doing real climate research instead of running computer simulations all day.

  3. Slightly off topic (but still talking about climate related satellites), whatever happened to Cryosat 2? I thought calibration was supposed to take about 6 months but it’s been up there nearly a year now and I’ve still heard nothing on it giving us a decision in the ice mass debate.

  4. Tom (@ 2):
    The launch window is small because Glory is being inserted into an orbit with a number of other satellites referred to as the A-train. You can find some more information here. A major challenge when using data collected by different satellites is that the “boundary conditions” may not be the same, e.g. solar angle and time of day. Having all of the satellites observing the same position on Earth at essentially the same time (a few minutes difference) makes it much easier to compare the results from each satellite against each other. This allows an apples to apples comparison.

    Part of the reason the window is so small is that they want it to be part of this group of satellites, and there are a few more that are still planned for the group. If there is too much lag, there is not enough fuel on board to ensure it makes it into the appropriate orbit and it will be much harder to insert the next satellite as well.

    A. Opinion (@ 3):
    Having worked with a number of people at NASA, it is very insulting to suggest they have not been trying very hard to answer this question by collect data. Older programs including SEASAT, LANDSAT, Topex/Poseidon, Jason, Jason-2, GRACE, TRMM, various polar satellites, and more. A lot of people have worked very hard to collect data to try and figure things out for quite some time. And mostly they are NOT running computer simulations.

  5. I covered VAFB for two years as a reporter at the Lompoc Record. These small launch windows are not uncommon, neither is that the smallest I can recall seeing.

    For the record: 2 a.m. launches suck. It’s too damn cold. It’s worse when it’s my turn to buy donuts for the other reporters and PA people.

    On the plus side: With windows this short at least you aren’t out there waiting for hours.

  6. I’m sure somewhere there’s a Californian who will look up in the sky when this happens and assume the Chinese are launching missiles over our heads from their super secret submarines.

    /Californian
    //Loving this state means you find humor in insanity

  7. Data from the Glory mission will allow scientists to better understand how the sun and tiny atmospheric particles called aerosols affect Earth’s climate.

    Ho. Hum. Who really cares? The truth is that outside of the fact that climate alarmism is political and the goal of the warmistas is economic destruction of the West, climate “science” is just plain boring.

  8. Pardon me for begging, but can someone direct me to a discussion of the satellite that NASA lost during launch in the last few weeks? I am aware of the headlines but not useful details. What was it supposed to do and what are NASA’s plans for replacing it?

  9. “Data from the Glory mission will allow scientists to better understand how the sun and tiny atmospheric particles called aerosols affect Earth’s climate.”

    You mean like the tiny aluminum, strontium, barium, and sulpher dioxide particles which the government has been spraying over our heads for the last twenty years? Those aerosols?

    What in the World are they Spraying?

    http://vimeo.com/16356798

  10. Attention . Those chemtrail conspiratorial believers who try to pollute this board may
    not like this statement.
    One, I have been an aviation professional, Pilot,Co-pilot, Weather observer, aircraft
    Servicing .
    Two, I was for 28 years around the various environs of Military, and Civilian, airport operations. I have held various security clearances, and been in places that I can’t
    tell you where.
    Three. I have never, ever seen, talked to or know of any one of the crackpot concepts we are being ‘sprayed’ with chemicals from aircraft. If this was as huge as ome say, some one some where would blow this wide open. Show me. What the video show are contrails conventional ,not unusual, contrails. Sundogs, Cirrus, and Stratus clouds, and
    other atmospheric conditions play a role in:How-they-look to the untrained eye.
    Bravo Sierra, ace…

  11. Theo Goodwin
    Not sure what launch you are referring to. Can you provide a link to any headlines? The major failure that occured recently was in Russia which resulted in them not completing the GLONASS constellation (their equivalent to GPS).

    Only other news I am aware of is postponing Glory’s launch.

  12. A friend of mine once worked for several years on a satellite that failed to make orbit. It is really too bad to see a failure such as this one – so many people worked very hard for a long time, only to have their work destroyed. Environmental monitoring satellites seem to have had a lot of bad luck recently…

  13. Glory failed to reach orbit. The fairing on the top of the rocket that covered the satellite failed to open.

    Hmmm. . . I wonder if someone forgot to take off the giant cinch strap illustrated in the photograph that accompanies this article. Zoom in and you can see what looks like a yellow nylon cinch strap encircling the top of the rocket over the fairing, holding some pink thingy onto the outside, and supporting some kind of blue covering tarp. . . . Ooops.

  14. Sensor operator says:
    March 3, 2011 at 9:53 am
    Theo Goodwin
    “Not sure what launch you are referring to. Can you provide a link to any headlines? The major failure that occured recently was in Russia which resulted in them not completing the GLONASS constellation (their equivalent to GPS). Only other news I am aware of is postponing Glory’s launch.”

    Amazing. While reading about the last delay I saw this crash. How about that? I’ve gone psychic. Probably the result of reading too much written by The Team.

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