Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) Launch Status 14 Apr 2003

Status Report From: Kennedy Space Center
Posted: Monday, April 14, 2003

MISSION: Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF)

  • LAUNCH VEHICLE: Delta II Heavy
  • LAUNCH PAD: 17-B, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
  • LAUNCH DATE: April 27, 2003
  • LAUNCH TIME: 4:25:01 a.m. EDT

It has been determined that additional time is needed to complete launch readiness evaluations for the Delta II launch vehicle prior to holding the Flight Readiness Review. Therefore, the launch of SIRTF is being rescheduled to occur on April 27, 2003, at 4:25:01 a.m. EDT.

On April 10 at Pad 17-B, the Delta II payload fairing was installed around the SIRTF spacecraft. Servicing of the observatory with cryogenic helium will begin next week.

SIRTF was transported from Hangar AE to launch pad 17-B and mated to the Boeing Delta II rocket on Saturday, April 5. An interface verification test to assure that electrical and mechanical connections have been properly established was successfully completed on Sunday, April 6. This was followed by a successful spacecraft state of health check.

A flight simulation to test the vehicle's systems that will operate during powered flight was completed April 3. An RP-1 leak check of the first stage that involves loading of the highly refined kerosene fuel was completed April 4. The Flight Program Verification, an integrated test of the vehicle and the spacecraft that is the final major test before launch, was successfully completed April 7.

Project management of SIRTF for NASA is by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The observatory is built by Lockheed Martin and Ball Aerospace.

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