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Delta II Rocket Coming Together For NASA's GLAST Satellite Launch

Date:
April 14, 2008
Source:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Summary:
The Delta II 7920-H, or "Heavy," rocket that will launch NASA's Gamma-ray Large Area Telescope satellite is in the process of being assembled on Launch Pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.

Artist rendering of the GLAST satellite.
Credit: NASA/Sonoma State University/Aurore Simonnet

The Delta II 7920-H, or "Heavy," rocket that will launch NASA's Gamma-ray Large Area Telescope (GLAST) satellite is in the process of being assembled on Launch Pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

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Solid rocket boosters were recently attached to the rocket. A series of nine strap-on solid rocket motors will next be mated with the rocket to help power the first stage. Because the Delta rocket is configured as a Delta II 7920 Heavy, the boosters are larger than those used on the standard configuration.

"The Delta II is one of our most reliable launch vehicles," said Rick Harnden, GLAST Program Scientist at NASA Headquarters, Washington. "However, we'll be breathing a lot easier once GLAST has been lofted successfully into orbit."

GLAST is slated for launch from the Cape Canaveral Air Station on May 16. The window for launch runs between 11:45 a.m. – 1:40 p.m. EDT.

NASA's Launch Services Program office at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) is responsible for the integration of GLAST with the Delta II. In addition, KSC is responsible for countdown management, and provides ground support necessary for final GLAST spacecraft preparations. The Delta II is provided to NASA as a launch service by the United Launch Alliance.

GLAST is a powerful space observatory that will explore the most extreme environments in the Universe, where nature harnesses energies far beyond anything possible on Earth. It will search for signs of new laws of physics and what composes the mysterious dark matter, explain how black holes accelerate immense jets of material to nearly light speed, and help crack the mysteries of the stupendously powerful explosions known as gamma-ray bursts.

NASA’s GLAST mission is an astrophysics and particle physics partnership, developed in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy, along with important contributions from academic institutions and partners in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Sweden, and the United States.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "Delta II Rocket Coming Together For NASA's GLAST Satellite Launch." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414145656.htm>.
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. (2008, April 14). Delta II Rocket Coming Together For NASA's GLAST Satellite Launch. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414145656.htm
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "Delta II Rocket Coming Together For NASA's GLAST Satellite Launch." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414145656.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

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