Saturday, November 13, 2010

Kodiak rocket launch next week will carry 7 satellites to orbit

The Kodiak Launch Complex is scheduled to see its second orbital mission take off next Friday afternoon when a Minotaur 4 rocket loaded with seven satellites is launched, reports Space Flight Now.

The launch customer is the U.S. Air Force Space Test Program, a unit devoted to demonstrating enabling technologies that could be incorporated on more costly and critical spacecraft in the future. ...

"On this single rocket, we will launch seven satellites carrying 16 science and technology experiments from the Air Force, Army, Navy, NASA and the National Science Foundation," said Air Force Col. Carol Welsch, director of the Space Test Program.

The Minotaur 4 rocket is scheduled for blastoff in a 90-minute launch window opening at 8:24 p.m. EST (4:24 p.m. Alaska time) next Friday, or 0124 GMT on Nov. 20.

The Air Force Minotaur 4 rocket will launch a group of satellites in a launch opportunity sponsored by the Air Force's Space Test Program. The payloads include the Air Force's STPSat 2 satellite, NASA's FASTSAT (Fast, Affordable, Science and Technology Satellite), two FASTRAC spacecraft from the University of Texas, the Air Force Academy's FalconSat 5 satellite, NASA's O/OREOS and NanoSail-D CubeSat missions and the RAX CubeSat for the University of Michigan.

More as we get closer to launch.