Author Topic: SCRUB: Delta IV-H - NROL-71 - December 8, 2018 - VAFB SLC-6 (20:15 PST)  (Read 38093 times)


Offline Jim

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Do we know when the rocket was transported to the launch pad?
Re: LV stage assembly chronology.  I don't know; I haven't seen it in any articles.

Delta IV's at SLC-6 are stacked on the pad inside of the Mobile Assembly Shelter + Mobile Service Tower.  The buildings are transported away from the rocket!  According to SFN, the MAS was moved December 6, and the MST was to be moved on the afternoon of December 7, local time.
***

Moot point: December 7 launch weather forecast:
Quote
...iffy conditions for a launch tonight, with only a 40 percent probability of favorable weather...  The chief weather concern is with ground winds.

And:
Quote
ULA has ordered a 24-hour recycle for a possible launch attempt tomorrow night.
https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/12/07/delta-382-mission-status-center/

What's the launch forecast for tomorrow, if this is a 1-day turn-around?
EDIT: answered above/below.
***

Follow-on observation: Extending the hold does not necessarily equal a launch window of significant time-span vs. an instantaneous launch window, yes?
***

Follow-on question: As this is NOT a launch to a (standard?) SSO, then there could be a significant shift in T-0 on tomorrow's (possible) launch date?  Or no?
EDIT: 13 minutes earlier.

The vehicle is assembled horizontally just like at the Cape.  Only the payload is hoisted at the pad.  The Mobile Assembly Shelter has no real role in assembly unlike what it did for shuttle.

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Do we know when the rocket was transported to the launch pad?
Re: LV stage assembly chronology.  I don't know; I haven't seen it in any articles.

Delta IV's at SLC-6 are stacked on the pad inside of the Mobile Assembly Shelter + Mobile Service Tower.  The buildings are transported away from the rocket!  According to SFN, the MAS was moved December 6, and the MST was to be moved on the afternoon of December 7, local time.

The vehicle is assembled horizontally just like at the Cape.  Only the payload is hoisted at the pad.  The Mobile Assembly Shelter has no real role in assembly unlike what it did for shuttle.

Oops.  Forgot about Delta IV horizontal assembly.  Where is that horizontal assembly performed--is it in the large building on the "other" side of the pad from the MST (forgot its name)?
« Last Edit: 12/08/2018 05:39 AM by zubenelgenubi »
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Online catdlr

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Do we know when the rocket was transported to the launch pad?
Re: LV stage assembly chronology.  I don't know; I haven't seen it in any articles.

Delta IV's at SLC-6 are stacked on the pad inside of the Mobile Assembly Shelter + Mobile Service Tower.  The buildings are transported away from the rocket!  According to SFN, the MAS was moved December 6, and the MST was to be moved on the afternoon of December 7, local time.

The vehicle is assembled horizontally just like at the Cape.  Only the payload is hoisted at the pad.  The Mobile Assembly Shelter has no real role in assembly unlike what it did for shuttle.

Oops.  Forgot about Delta IV horizontal assembly.  Where is that horizontal assembly performed--is it in the large building on the "other" side of the pad from the MST (forgot its name)?

I beleive here (Jim would know better):  map
Tony De La Rosa

Offline Star One

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Here’s an updated search elements post by Mr Molczan.

http://satobs.org/seesat/Dec-2018/0045.html

Offline hootowls

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VAFB Delta IV processing flow - diagram on page 7-21 of ULA's Delta IV User's Guide.

https://www.ulalaunch.com/docs/default-source/rockets/delta-iv-user's-guide.pdf

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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https://twitter.com/ulalaunch/status/1071498055050911744

Quote
Weather has improved! We are at 70% chance of favorable launch weather for tonight's #NROL71 launch. #DeltaIVHeavy

Offline worldtimedate

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https://twitter.com/ulalaunch/status/1071501846500401153

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One step closer to launch of the NROL71 with DeltaIVHeavy. The MST is parked and processing continues as we work towards a 8:06pm PST launch tonight.

Online catdlr

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Delta IV Heavy NROL-71 UNVEILED FOR LAUNCH (time-lapse)


AmericaSpace
Published on Dec 8, 2018

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgJda-LFBw0?t=001

Tony De La Rosa


Offline Helodriver

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Spent some time inside and around SLC-6 yesterday and today. By far the largest launch facility on the base, it is difficult to capture the sheer enormity of it and its components in one frame.

For my 1000th post on NSF, something special, in this multimegapixel composite the open and retracted Mobile Assembly Shelter frames the Delta 4 Heavy which stands half enclosed by the Mobile Service Tower and Fixed Service Structure. One of the highest resolution images of the entire complex yet taken.

Originally built for Manned Orbiting Laboratory, then modified to support Shuttle then further adapted for Delta IV, SLC-6 is the only true heavylift pad out west. it will be interesting to see what vehicle makes its home next here once Delta IV flies out its last flights in the coming years.
« Last Edit: 12/08/2018 11:10 PM by Helodriver »

Offline spacepat_o

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Quote
4:36 p.m. PST (7:36 p.m. EST; 0036 UTC) – Countdown stopped

This is Delta Launch Control at T-minus 3 hours, 15 minutes and holding. The launch team is troubleshooting an issue and has elected to stop the countdown until it is resolved before we move further into fueling operations.

Offline spacepat_o

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Quote
4:50 p.m. PST (7:50 p.m. EST; 0050 UTC) – CBC LOX chilldown

The thermal condition process, known as chilldown, has started for the liquid oxygen systems on Delta IV Heavy rocket's three common booster cores. This preps the tanks and plumbing to guard against shock when the super-cold oxidizer begins flowing into the rocket stages.

4:51 p.m. PST (7:51 p.m. EST; 0051 UTC)

The common booster cores liquid hydrogen loading operation is switching from "slow-fill" to "fast-fill" mode as planned.

The cryogenics are fed to the three CBCs via umbilicals from the tail service masts on the launch table.

4:53 p.m. PST (7:53 p.m. EST; 0053 UTC)

A new launch time will be established later due to the brief, unplanned hold in the countdown.

4:56 p.m. PST (7:56 p.m. EST; 0056 UTC)

The liquid hydrogen level in the three CBCs is 20 percent already.
« Last Edit: 12/08/2018 11:59 PM by spacepat_o »


Offline Steven Pietrobon

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New launch time.

https://www.ulalaunch.com/missions/delta-iv-nrol-71

"5:55 p.m. PST (8:55 p.m. EST; 0155 UTC) –New launch time
Tonight’s targeted liftoff time has been adjusted to 8:15 p.m. PST (11:15 p.m. EST; 0415 UTC)."
« Last Edit: 12/09/2018 01:53 AM by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Story behind the patch.

"6:06 p.m. PST (9:06 p.m. EST; 0206 UTC)
The NROL-71 patch is emblazoned on the Delta IV Heavy rocket’s payload fairing. Here’s the story behind the art:"
« Last Edit: 12/09/2018 01:20 AM by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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What the NRO does.

"6:21 p.m. PST (9:21 p.m. EST; 0321 UTC
United Launch Alliance is using its Delta IV Heavy rocket to launch the NROL-71 mission for the National Reconnaissance Office. The NRO is a U.S. government agency responsible for developing, acquiring, launching, and operating America’s intelligence satellites.

The National Reconnaissance Office's systems are critical to national security, U.S. policy makers, and warfighters. These systems provide the foundation for global situational awareness, and address the nation's toughest intelligence challenges. Frequently, NRO systems are the only collectors able to access critical areas of interest, and data from overhead sensors provides unique information and perspectives not available from other sources.

The NRO's key customers and mission partners include: policy makers, the Armed Services, the Intelligence Community, Departments of State, Justice and Treasury, and civil agencies. All of them depend on the unique capabilities NRO systems provide:

* Monitoring the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction
* Tracking international terrorists, drug traffickers, and criminal organizations
* Developing highly accurate military targeting data and bomb damage assessments
* Supporting international peacekeeping and humanitarian relief operations
* Assessing the impact of natural disasters, such as earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, and fires.

Together with other Defense Department satellites, the NRO systems play a crucial role in providing global communications, precision navigation, early warning of missile launches and potential military aggression, signals intelligence, and near real-time imagery to U.S. forces to support the war on terrorism and other continuing operations.

NRO satellites also support civil customers in response to disaster relief and environmental research. Scientists created a global environment database using NRO imagery to help predict climate change, assess crop production, map habitats of endangered species, track oil spills, and study wetlands. NRO data also forms the basis for products that help depict and assess the devastation in areas affected by natural disasters.

The NRO's innovation also inspired technology in everyday life with contributions to medical imaging, global communications, high-definition television, cellular phones, the global positioning system (GPS), and much more.

With its vigilance from above, the NRO gives America's policymakers, intelligence analysts, warfighters and homeland security specialists the critical information they need to keep America safe, secure, and free."
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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"6:26 p.m. PST (9:26 p.m. EST; 0226 UTC)
Liquid oxygen loading to the three common booster cores has finished. Topping will be completed shortly."
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Second stage LOX loading complete.

"6:42 p.m. PST (9:42 p.m. EST; 0242 UTC)
The Delta Cryogenic Second Stage has been loaded with its liquid oxygen supply. The propellant, along with liquid hydrogen that continues to be filled, will be consumed by the stage’s RL10B-2 engine."
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Second stage LH2 loading complete.

"6:52 p.m. PST (9:52 p.m. EST; 0252 UTC)
Loading of the upper stage liquid hydrogen fuel tank was just reported complete, giving us a 1.6-million-pound Delta IV Heavy rocket that is fueled for launch at 8:15 p.m. PST (11:15 p.m. EST; 0415 UTC) today. At T-minus 1 hour, 12 minutes and counting, this is Delta Launch Control."
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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