New Launch Date for Deep Impact

Status Report From: Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Posted: Thursday, April 3, 2003

image A new launch window is announced for the Deep Impact project, the first mission to look deep inside a comet. Technical and management issues, including contamination in the propulsion system and late deliveries of key spacecraft components, resulted in delays in the pre-flight testing schedule. These concerns led Deep Impact Principal Investigator, Mike A'Hearn, to recommend to NASA a delay of launch.

A launch window beginning December 30, 2004, previously identified as a back-up date, provides more thorough testing for the spacecraft systems before launch and allows the spacecraft to arrive at Comet Tempel 1 to impact it as originally scheduled on July, 4, 2005. NASA management approved the recommendation.

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