Author Topic: LIVE: Orbital ATK Minotaur 4 - ORS-5 - August 25 2017, SLC-46  (Read 33520 times)

Offline rayleighscatter

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Hang on, they're putting a 5 m Orion on a 2.3 m SR118? That'll look.... interesting.
They're supposed to be wrapping the SR118 in a shell to get the same diameter. So it will be a stubby fat rocket. Little Joe III in all but name.

Offline IanThePineapple

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They better call it Little Joe III or I will be very mad
Proud creator of Ian's Paper Model Rocket Collection:
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=42383.0

Offline Welsh Dragon

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Ah that makes sense.

Offline Jim

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They better call it Little Joe III or I will be very mad

They aren't.  They refer to it as the SR118

Offline northenarc

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 By 'pathfinder vehicle' I presume this means its an unfueled (unloaded?) boilerplate test article for pad fit checks, and not live solid rocket stages?

Offline Lar

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"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Offline Lar

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See also https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=37999  as we are debating a merge. This post will be modified.
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Online Skyrocket

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Terrific to see SLC 46 back in action.  This will be the fourth launch center, to host a Minotaur 4/5 launch.  Not many launch vehicles can make that claim.  (R-7/Soyuz.  Pegasus.  Any others?)

 - Ed Kyle

Scout/Blue Scout (Wallops Island, Cape Canaveral, Vandenberg, San Marco Platform)

Offline gongora

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Offline Salo

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James Dean‏ @flatoday_jdean
First Minotaur rocket launch from Florida (Minotaur IV/ORS-5) targeted for Aug. 25.
https://twitter.com/flatoday_jdean/status/877885791053250560

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Quote
Space Florida‏ @SpaceFlorida 7m7 minutes ago

Yesterday, LC-46 moved the MAS to the Launch Ready Configuration as part of the preparation for the @OrbitalATK Minotaur 4 launch on 8/25

https://twitter.com/SpaceFlorida/status/887663994403737605

Edit: add video
« Last Edit: 07/19/2017 01:35 PM by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline Star One

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SN article on this launch complete with the only released illustration of the payload.

Quote
Ground crews at a long-dormant launch pad at Cape Canaveral are stacking surplus military missile motors for the Aug. 25 launch of a Minotaur 4 rocket with a satellite designed to track orbital traffic thousands of miles above Earth.

The process to construct the Minotaur 4 rocket began with the hoisting of the launcher’s first stage at pad 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The lower three solid-fueled stages of the Minotaur 4 come from the Air Force’s stockpile of decommissioned Peacekeeper missiles deployed in the 1980s to hurl nuclear weapons to targets around the world.

A spokesperson for Orbital ATK, which operates the Minotaur family in agreement with the U.S. Air Force, confirmed stacking of the Minotaur 4 booster recently started at Cape Canaveral.

Liftoff is set for Aug. 25 at 11:15 p.m. EDT (0315 GMT on Aug. 26), the opening of a four-hour launch window.

...

https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/08/04/build-up-begins-for-first-minotaur-rocket-launch-from-cape-canaveral/

edit/gongora: shortened quote
« Last Edit: 08/08/2017 04:39 PM by gongora »

Offline elist

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I was on the Historic Launch Pads bus tour from KSC two days ago.  We were taken down a road that passes LC-46 as part of the tour.  It was in the distance, but I can report that all of the doors were closed on the building surrounding the tower.  We were not allowed to take pictures as it is on CCAFS.  I asked the tour guide about LC-46 and they reported the same public information posted here and elsewhere about the specifics of OATK's reactivation of the pad.

Offline Star One

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Do we know if there will be live streaming of the launch, if memory serves the Minotaur leaps off the pad, not surprising mind considering its heritage?
« Last Edit: 08/08/2017 07:32 PM by Star One »

Offline russianhalo117

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Do we know if there will be live streaming of the launch, if memory serves the Minotaur leaps off the pad, not surprising mind considering its heritage?
Previous flights have been webcast. Expect a mission page with such details to show up soon on the OA website.

Offline zubenelgenubi

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It's been a while since the last Minotaur IV/V/VI launch (LADEE on September 7, 2013).

Attached is the most recent version of the User's Guide that I could find on-line.
Support your local planetarium!

Offline Targeteer

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https://www.facebook.com/SpaceandMissileSystemsCenter/posts/1636039473093427

Air Force, mission partners prepare satellite for August launch

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center’s Operationally Responsive Space Office completed a major program milestone after overseeing the successful delivery of their ORS-5 satellite from Lexington, Massachusetts to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida for final processing, encapsulation, stacking and integration for launch.

The ORS-5 satellite is scheduled for launch Aug. 25 at 11:15 p.m. EDT from Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

“The delivery and upcoming launch of ORS-5 marks a significant milestone in fulfilling our commitment to the space situational awareness mission and U.S. Strategic Command,” said Lt. Gen. John F. Thompson, commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center and Air Force program executive officer for Space. “It’s an important asset for the warfighter and will be employed for at least three years.”

Upon its delivery, the ORS-5 satellite, also known as SensorSat, was processed for encapsulation in the Astrotech Space Operations Florida processing facility.

A combined government and contractor team of mission partners executed final ground activities including a Launch Base Compatibility Test to verify satellite integrity after shipment, an intersegment test to verify communication compatibility from the satellite to the on-orbit operations center and the final battery reconditioning for launch, prior to its integration with the Minotaur IV launch vehicle.

“This is my first launch as the ORS director, and I am thrilled to see this mission get one step closer to operational capability,” said Col. Shahnaz Punjani, director of the Operationally Responsive Space Office at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico. “As a former launch group commander, it is also very exciting to be part of the first Minotaur launch from Cape Canaveral. Our partners at the 45th Space Wing, Orbital ATK, and Space Florida did a tremendous job restoring Launch Complex 46 to active service and preparing it for this launch.”

The satellite was transported from the MIT Lincoln Laboratory facility in Lexington, Massachusetts, in a customized shipping container. The transport crew ensured the satellite was transported safely and according to the time sensitive schedule.

“The safe transport, processing and integration of ORS-5 to the Minotaur IV launch vehicle was paramount and the total government and contractor team worked tirelessly to ensure mission success,” Thompson reiterated.

Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., is the U.S. Air Force's center of acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems. Its portfolio includes the Global Positioning System, military satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space launch and range systems, satellite control networks, space based infrared systems and space situational awareness capabilities.
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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Laboratory engineering team stands in front of the Operationally Responsive Space (ORS)-5 satellite in the MIT LL clean room at the Lexington, Massachusetts facility, prior to shipment for final processing and stacking atop an Orbital ATK Minotaur IV launch vehicle at Launch Complex 46, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. From left to right: Joe Warfel - Assembly Technician; Michele Weatherwax - Mechanical Engineer; Al Pillsbury - Mechanical Engineer; Marshall Solomon - Thermal Engineer, and; Eui Lee - Thermal Engineer.

Prior to transport to CCAFS, ORS-5 completed all testing to include Thermal Vacuum, Final Integrated Systems Test, and Launch Based Compatibility Test.

ORS-5, also known as SensorSat, is a single satellite constellation with a primary mission to provide space situational awareness. It measures about five feet long, two and a half feet wide, and weighs about 250 pounds. It will operate from a low, zero inclination orbit approximately 372 miles above the earth to aid the U.S. military's tracking of other satellites and space debris in geosynchronous orbit, 22,236 miles above the equator, commonly used by defense-related communications satellites, television broadcasting stations, and international space platforms.

At a cost of $87.5 million ($49 million satellite, $11.3 million ground system, $27.2 million launch), ORS-5 will deliver space situational awareness capabilities at a significantly reduced cost compared to larger, more complex satellites, and serves as a gap filler mission for the Space-Based Space Surveillance (SBSS) Block 10 mission, originally launched in 2010. A successor SBSS mission is not expected to launch before 2021. Technologies demonstrated on ORS-5 could be harvested for the SBSS follow-on mission. (Courtesy photo: MIT LL)

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The engineering team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, Massachusetts perform a light leak test on the Operationally Responsive Space (ORS)-5 satellite prior to shipment for launch. ORS-5, also known as SensorSat, is a single satellite constellation with a primary mission to provide space situational awareness. It will operate from a low (zero degree inclination) orbit 372 miles above the earth to aid the U.S. military's tracking of other satellites and space debris in geosynchronous orbit, commonly used by defense-related communications satellites, television broadcasting stations, and international space platforms 22,236 miles above the equator.

The launch of ORS-5, scheduled for Aug. 25, 2017, is being led by the Space and Missile Systems Center's (SMC) Operationally Responsive Space Office (SMC/ORS) and Launch Enterprise Services Directorate (SMC/LE) on the first Orbital ATK Minotaur IV to fly from Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. SMC's Advanced Systems and Development Directorate (SMC/AD) integrated the ground system into its Multi-Mission Space Operations Center (MMSOC) version 2.1. ORS-5 is the first system on the updated ground system, which serves as the foundation for Enterprise Ground Services.

ORS-5 measures about five feet long, two and a half feet wide, and weighs about 250 pounds. It is designed to deliver timely, reliable and accurate space situational awareness information to the United States Strategic Command through the Joint Space Operations Center. Air Force Space
Command's 50th Space Wing/1st Space Operations Squadron at Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado will operate the ORS-5 system during its three-year design life to enhance space tracking capability, support the nation's space programs, and bolster safety of satellites in geosynchronous orbits.

Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo, California, is the U.S. Air Force's center of acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems. Its portfolio includes the Global Positioning System, military satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space launch and range systems, satellite control networks, space based infrared systems and space situational awareness capabilities. (Courtesy photo: MIT LL)

---

The ORS-5 satellite, also known as SensorSat, measures about five feet long, two and a half feet wide, and weighs about 250 pounds. It is designed to deliver timely, reliable and accurate space situational awareness information to the United States Strategic Command through the Joint Space Operations Center.

Air Force Space Command's 50th Space Wing/1st Space Operations Squadron at Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado will operate the ORS-5 system during its three-year design life to enhance space tracking capability, support the nation's space programs, and bolster safety of satellites in geosynchronous orbits. (Courtesy photo: MIT LL)

---

The Operationally Responsive Space (ORS)-5 satellite, also known as SensorSat, undergoes thermal vacuum testing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, Massachusetts prior to shipment for processing and integration atop an Orbital ATK Minotaur IV launch vehicle. Scheduled for launch on Aug. 25, 2017, ORS-5 is a single satellite constellation with a primary mission to provide space situational awareness at a significantly reduced cost compared to larger, more complex satellites.

The overall mission is budgeted at $87.5 million -- $49 million satellite, $11.3 million ground system, $27.2 million launch -- and has a three-year design life. It serves as a gap filler mission for the Space-Based Space Surveillance (SBSS) Block 10 mission, originally launched in 2010. The Air Force is working on a follow-on mission to the SBSS project for launch in 2021. Technologies demonstrated on ORS-5 could be harvested for the SBSS follow-on mission.

ORS-5 measures about five feet long, two and a half feet wide, and weighs about 250 pounds. It will operate from a low (zero inclination) orbit 372 miles above the earth to aid the U.S. military’s tracking of other satellites and space debris in geosynchronous orbit, commonly used by defense-related communications satellites, television broadcasting stations, and international space platforms 22,236 miles above the equator.

The ORS-5 program is managed by the U.S. Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center’s Operationally Responsive Space Office, located at the Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, Massachusetts, is the prime space vehicle contractor.

The launch of ORS-5 is being led by the Space and Missile Systems Center’s Launch Enterprise Services Directorate on the first Orbital ATK Minotaur IV to fly from Launch Complex 46, managed by Space Florida, a state economic development agency chartered to attract commercial space business to Florida. Originally built in the 1980s for land-based tests of the Navy’s Trident missile, the launch facility lies on military property at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

SMC’s Advanced Systems and Development Directorate integrated the ground system into its Multi-Mission Space Operations Center (MMSOC) version 2.1. ORS-5 is the first system on the updated ground system, which serves as the foundation for Enterprise Ground Services. Air Force Space Command’s 50th Space Wing/1st Space Operations Squadron, will operate the ORS-5 system.

SMC’s Operationally Responsive Space Office is taking a new approach to risk and mission assurance to rapidly deploy capabilities that meet "minimum warfighter essential requirements" to satisfy warfighter needs across the entire spectrum of operations, from peacetime through conflict.

Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo, California, is the U.S. Air Force's center of acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems. Its portfolio includes the Global Positioning System, military satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space launch and range systems, satellite control networks, space based infrared systems and space situational awareness capabilities. (Courtesy photo: MIT LL)
— at MIT Lincoln Laboratory

--

The Operationally Responsive Space (ORS)-5 mission emblem.

The launch of ORS-5, scheduled for Aug. 25, 2017, is being led by the Space and Missile Systems Center's (SMC) Operationally Responsive Space Office (SMC/ORS) and Launch Enterprise Services Directorate (SMC/LE) on the first Orbital ATK Minotaur IV to fly from Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. SMC's Advanced Systems and Development Directorate (SMC/AD) integrated the ground system into its Multi-Mission Space Operations Center (MMSOC) version 2.1. ORS-5 is the first system on the updated ground system, which serves as the foundation for Enterprise Ground Services. (U.S. Air Force graphic/ Space and Missile Systems Center Public Affairs-Multimedia)
« Last Edit: 08/18/2017 02:31 AM by Targeteer »
Best quote heard during an inspection, "I was unaware that I was the only one who was aware."

Offline Targeteer

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http://www.vandenberg.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/1282070/1st-asts-provides-critical-support-for-minotaur-launch-at-cape/

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

The 1st Air and Space Test Squadron at Vandenberg Air Force Base will be assisting with the first ever Minotaur IV launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

The 1st ASTS team coordinated the transport for the first three stages of the engine to Cape Canaveral AFS where they will provide support through the day of launch.

The Minotaur IV is an expendable launch system derived from an old Peacekeeper Intercontinental Ballistic Missile.

“We have specialized equipment here, where we stack the Minotaur and make sure they are good to go,” said Capt. Julian Martinez, 1st ASTS mission integrator. “The upcoming launch at Canaveral is a Minotaur IV vehicle, which is an old peacekeeper system. There are five stages, and the DoD owns the first three. We are the only Air Force blue suit team that is able to maintain, ship and handle all of these rocket components. When we are out there we always get referred to as ‘the Air Force guys’, because we are the only uniformed personnel that have a direct impact on ground operations.”

As the only unit in the Air Force that can stack and transport the Minotaur IV, the 1 ASTS utilizes experienced missile maintainers on a space assignment.

“As a unit we rely heavily on the missile maintainers that have prior experience in the missile fields,” said Brian Tafoya, 1st ASTS flight chief. “Even though we are now on the space launch side of the house, we are able to use the knowledge of the ICBM delivery systems to ensure we do our part in the launch process. It is a bit different than what we are used to. Instead of loading a missile into a silo we get to stack it on a launch pad. Our ICBM experience translates directly into the small space lift mission and is a pretty unique experience.”

The primary responsibility of the 1st ASTS is to ensure the launch vehicle is processed and stacked for a successful mission.

“For this upcoming launch from the Cape, we shipped the first three stages out about a month before the projected launch date,” said Martinez. “After the boosters arrive in Florida, we coordinate with the 45th Space Wing to use their cranes to load the boosters onto Minotaur specific trucks called Type-II’s, for convoy to the launch pad. After all three stages are stacked on the launch pad, we hand custody off to the launch service provider, Orbital ATK. Stage four and five are owned by Orbital ATK and include the payload, avionics, and instrumentation.”

With a low launch tempo for the Minotaur family of vehicles, the 1st ASTS team is constantly training.  This prevents future discrepancies and maintains currency.

“We don’t launch a lot of these, so one of the ways we stay ready for a real operation is by practicing,” said Martinez. “We run through procedures and talk with quality assurance, keeping everything up to date. This mission will launch August 25th from Cape Canaveral AFS is a pretty monumental event for the whole squadron. The team will be traveling to watch the launch, and perform post-launch equipment recovery.”

The team may be small, but what they lack in numbers they make up for in dedication and expertise.

“When we conduct an operation like this, from cradle to grave, it gives us a sense of pride,” said Tafoya. “We have maintained a mission ready posture and now have a chance to prove what we can do. It is always a challenge to stay consistent across a few year gap between missions, but we do, and when we have a Minotaur launch we are mission ready.”
Best quote heard during an inspection, "I was unaware that I was the only one who was aware."

Offline cscott

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Any idea if this will be visible from ft Lauderdale?

Offline Targeteer

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http://www.losangeles.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/1283230/ors-5-satellite-prepped-for-launch/#.WZdPBCuiWnI.facebook

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

With a Flight Readiness Review successfully concluded Aug. 17, the Air Force’s Operational Responsive Space (ORS)-5 satellite is now ready for its journey to equatorial orbit from Space Launch Complex-46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. It is scheduled for launch on Aug. 25 during a four-hour launch window that opens at 11:15 p.m., EDT, after being stacked and mated atop a five-stage Orbital ATK Minotaur IV launch vehicle.

ORS-5, also known as SensorSat, was encapsulated Aug. 11 at the Astrotech Space Operations Florida processing facility in preparation for its upcoming launch. Encapsulation of ORS-5 marked the satellite’s completion of all major testing prior to transfer to LC-46. The stacking of the Minotaur IV launch vehicle and integration events on the launch pad with the payload are significant milestones in ORS-5’s launch progress.

At $87.5 million ($49 million satellite, $11.3 million ground system, $27.2 million launch), ORS-5, also known as SensorSat, measures about five feet long and two and a half feet wide and weighs about 250 pounds (113 kg). The satellite will be placed into a low earth orbit approximately 372 miles (599 kilometers) at zero degrees inclination for test and checkout.

It will remain in that orbit over a three-year design life to aid the U.S. military’s tracking of other satellites and space debris in geosynchronous orbit, 22,236 miles above the equator, commonly used by defense-related communications satellites, television broadcasting stations, and international space platforms. ORS-5 will deliver space situational awareness capabilities at a significantly reduced cost compared to larger, more complex satellites, and serves as a gap filler mission for the Space-Based Space Surveillance (SBSS) Block 10 mission, originally launched in 2010. A successor SBSS mission is not expected to launch before 2021.

This satellite’s payload has one optical sensor that provides continuous, un-cued, rapid GEO belt search to detect changes and provide precise regional awareness. The sensors were built by the MIT LL in June of 2016, where they began integration with the bus. The fully integrated spacecraft went through several levels of testing to ensure its launch and mission readiness. The testing included subcomponent, component, and full satellite comprehensive functional testing, vibration testing, thermal vacuum testing, final integrated systems testing and factory compatibility testing. 

These tests all provided a high level of confidence for the satellite’s ability to successfully perform its mission.

Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., is the U.S. Air Force's center of acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems.  Its portfolio includes the Global Positioning System, military satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space launch and range systems, satellite control networks, space based infrared systems and space situational awareness capabilities.

NOTE TO EDITORS: Media representatives can submit questions for response regarding this topic by sending an e-mail to smcpa.media@us.af.mil

SPECIAL NOTICE: Due to launch pad safety restrictions, there will be no remote camera setup opportunities available for media at LC-46. However, media wishing to view the nighttime launch of ORS-5/Minotaur IV from the 5th Space Launch Squadron at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station have until Monday, Aug. 21 to submit name and affiliation to smcpa.media@us.af.mil for coordination with the 45th Space Wing Public Affairs office. 45 SW/PA requires three working days to process access list for controlled escort of media onto CCAFS.
Best quote heard during an inspection, "I was unaware that I was the only one who was aware."

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