UNB Technology Space Launch Delayed

September 16, 2013  - By 0 Comments

Update: Elon Musk, SpaceX’s CEO and chief designer, has posted an update on the status of the upcoming Falcon 9 launch on his Twitter account. “Will do another static fire of rocket to make sure all is good & AF [[Air Force]] needs to test ICBMs, so probable launch Sept 29/30,” Musk tweeted.

“The static fire is scheduled for later this week, perhaps Wednesday, sources said. It will retest the Falcon 9 rocket after several problems cropped up during a hotfire of the launcher’s engines Thursday at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

“The U.S. Air Force Western Range, which controls a network of tracking and communications assets based at Vandenberg, is busy for the next few weeks due to Minuteman ballistic missile testing.”


The Falcon 9 rocket, with CASSIOPE inside its fairing, on the way to the launch pad at Vandenberg Air Force Base. (Photo credit: SpaceX).

The Falcon 9 rocket, with CASSIOPE inside its fairing, on the way to the launch pad at Vandenberg Air Force Base. (Photo credit: SpaceX).

A GPS instrument designed by University of New Brunswick scientists is scheduled to be launched into space aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on September 15. The rocket will depart Vandenberg Air Force base in California as part of the CASSIOPE (Cascade Smallsat and Ionospheric Polar Explorer) mission.

Dr. Richard Langley, GPS World Innovation editor and professor in geodesy and geomatics engineering at the University of New Brunswick, is a principal investigator behind the scientific portion of the CASSIOPE mission. Langley and his colleagues will monitor data from the GPS instrument, which is part of the Enhanced Polar Outflow Probe (e-POP) payload aboard the spacecraft.

E-POP will continue the sequence of Canada’s orbiting space environment sensors, which began with Canada’s first satellite, Alouette 1, launched in 1962 to study the ionosphere. e-POP is, perhaps, the most extensive suite of sensors for studying the ionosphere/magnetosphere/thermosphere yet to be launched, and will provide Canadian and other scientists with the opportunity to better understand the impact and variability the sun has on the space environment — what we call “space weather.”

The website SpaceFlight Now will be covering the launch.

The research satellite CASSIOPE on a test platform at the Canadian Space Agency’s David Florida Laboratory. CASSIOPE hosts the GPS Attitude, Positioning, and Profiling instrument designed by GGE researchers. It is currently scheduled for launch in 2010. The four white antennas on the left-facing side of the spacecraft will be used to determine the position, velocity, and attitude of the spacecraft while the antenna on the upper side will be used to profile the ionosphere’s electron density. Photograph courtesy of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd.

The research satellite CASSIOPE on a test platform at the Canadian Space Agency’s David Florida Laboratory. CASSIOPE hosts the GPS Attitude, Positioning, and Profiling instrument designed by GGE researchers. The four white antennas on the left-facing side of the spacecraft will be used to determine the position, velocity, and attitude of the spacecraft while the antenna on the upper side will be used to profile the ionosphere’s electron density. (Photograph courtesy of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd.)

GPS World staff

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