Author Topic: SpaceX Falcon 9 : NASA IXPE : KSC LC-39A : 9 December 2021 (0600 UTC)  (Read 85595 times)

Online Rondaz

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NASA’s IXPE Spacecraft Arrives in Florida Ahead of Kennedy Launch

James Cawley Posted on November 9, 2021

The Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) spacecraft, which will study the polarization of X-rays coming to us from some of the universe’s most extreme sources – including black holes and dead stars known as pulsars – arrived at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Nov. 5, 2021.

NASA’s first mission dedicated to measuring X-ray polarization, IXPE is scheduled to launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 vehicle from Kennedy’s Launch Complex 39A on Dec. 9, 2021. The launch is managed by NASA’s Launch Services Program, based at Kennedy.

Final prelaunch testing of IXPE began on Monday, Nov. 8. The spacecraft is expected to be mated to the launch vehicle during the last week of November.

IXPE will fly three space telescopes with sensitive detectors capable of measuring the polarization of cosmic X-rays, allowing scientists to answer fundamental questions about these extremely complex environments where gravitational, electric, and magnetic fields are at their limits.

NASA selected IXPE as an Explorers Program mission in 2017. The IXPE project is a collaboration between NASA and the Italian Space Agency. NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, manages the IXPE mission. Ball Aerospace, headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, manages spacecraft operations with support from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, manages the Explorers Program for the agency’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

https://blogs.nasa.gov/kennedy/2021/11/09/nasas-ixpe-spacecraft-arrives-in-florida-ahead-of-kennedy-launch/

Offline scr00chy

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Booster B1062.4 has been spotted recently at KSC with a second stage already attached, but since it wasn't used for Starlink 4-1, I'm guessing it will launch IXPE?

https://twitter.com/chancebelloise/status/1456273334186831883
« Last Edit: 11/13/2021 01:07 pm by scr00chy »

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Booster B1062.4 has been spotted recently at KSC with a second stage already attached, but since it wasn't used for Starlink 4-1, I'm guessing it will launch IXPE?
<snip>

Or, it could be for the next Florida Starlink launch.
« Last Edit: 11/14/2021 08:12 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Offline catdlr

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Meet NASA’s Newest Set of X-ray Eyes on the Universe

Quote
The Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer mission is set to launch Dec. 9 on a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. In space, IXPE will explore the leftovers of exploded stars, black holes, and more by looking at a special property of light called polarization.

Tony De La Rosa

Online Rondaz

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Meet IXPE! This new X-ray telescope is slated to launch next month and will help reveal the shapes of things that are otherwise invisible to us. It will help astronomers understand how black holes spin and why pulsars shine so brightly in X-rays.

https://twitter.com/NASAUniverse/status/1464270500289556487

Online Rondaz

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Watch IXPE Prelaunch Activities, Launch on NASA TV

James Cawley Posted on December 1, 2021

NASA will provide coverage of the prelaunch and launch activities for the Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) mission, scheduled to lift off no earlier than 1 a.m. EST Thursday, Dec. 9, on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA’s Launch Services Program based at Kennedy is managing the launch.

IXPE is the first satellite dedicated to measuring the polarization of X-rays from a variety of cosmic sources, such as black holes and neutron stars.

Live launch coverage will begin at 12:30 a.m. on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website. On Tuesday, Dec. 7, NASA will hold a payload briefing at 1 p.m. and a prelaunch news briefing at 5:30 p.m.

Click here to view the complete mission coverage.

https://blogs.nasa.gov/ixpe/2021/12/01/watch-ixpe-prelaunch-activities-launch-on-nasa-tv/

Online Rondaz

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IXPE Undergoing Final Processing in Preparation for Spacecraft Mate

James Cawley Posted on December 2, 2021

Weeks of work are paying off for engineers and technicians from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida who have been preparing the agency’s Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) spacecraft since its arrival by truck from Ball Aerospace in Boulder, Colorado, to Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Nov. 5, 2021.

Important activities continue inside SpaceX’s Payload Processing Facility in advance of the next major milestone – mating the spacecraft to the launch vehicle.

“We’ve been doing final checkouts and testing on IXPE prior to mating activities,” said Jake Shriver, mission integration engineer for NASA’s Launch Services Program (LSP), based at Kennedy.

IXPE is targeted to launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy’s Launch Complex 39A on Dec. 9, at 1 a.m. EST. The mission is NASA’s first dedicated to measuring X-ray polarization. The launch is managed by LSP.

Following mating of the spacecraft to the launch vehicle will be encapsulation, where the fairing halves come together around the spacecraft. A couple of days before launch, the encapsulated assembly will roll out to the pad to be mated to the first- and second-stage rocket boosters.

IXPE will study changes in the polarization of X-ray light through some of the universe’s most extreme sources, including black holes, dead stars known as pulsars, and more. Polarization contains clues that helps scientists better understand these mysterious phenomena.

“I can’t wait for IXPE to get into space and start returning science data,” Shriver said. “The mission is going to do amazing things for the astrophysics and science communities.”

https://blogs.nasa.gov/kennedy/2021/12/02/ixpe-undergoing-final-processing-in-preparation-for-spacecraft-mate/

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Starlink 4-3 using B1060.9.  B1062.4 for IXPE?
Booster B1062.4 has been spotted recently at KSC with a second stage already attached, but since it wasn't used for Starlink 4-1, I'm guessing it will launch IXPE?
<snip>

Or, it could be for the next Florida Starlink launch.
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Offline ZachS09

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Given "A Shortfall of Gravitas" was used for the Starlink 4-3 mission last night, "Just Read the Instructions" should be the drone ship for IXPE.
Liftoff for St. Jude's! Go Dragon, Go Falcon, Godspeed Inspiration4!

Offline kaa

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Starlink 4-3 using B1060.9.  B1062.4 for IXPE?
Booster B1062.4 has been spotted recently at KSC with a second stage already attached, but since it wasn't used for Starlink 4-1, I'm guessing it will launch IXPE?
<snip>

Or, it could be for the next Florida Starlink launch.

The IXPE science team have been told that they have the same booster as Crew-1 which would make this B1061.5.

Offline eriblo

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Falcon rolling to the pad via Spaceflight Now:

Online Rondaz

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Spacecraft, Rocket Come Together for IXPE Mission

James Cawley Posted on December 3, 2021

NASA’s Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) spacecraft recently eclipsed multiple key milestones at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Following a series of “aliveness” tests to verify the health of the spacecraft, teams mated the structure to the payload adapter – a ring that interfaces between the spacecraft and the top of the rocket. Next, multi-layer insulation was installed to provide thermal protection for the spacecraft in space.

After items such as optic and sensitive instrument covers were removed, the nose fairing and the spacecraft were brought together, signaling a major achievement in the mission: encapsulation.

“This is when you mate the spacecraft to the rocket, so it’s the two halves coming together,” said Brett Perkins, launch site integration manager for NASA’s Launch Services Program, based at Kennedy. “There are several critical lifting operations of the spacecraft. You have to be very careful and methodical; a lot of hardware comes together during this timeframe.”

The mission is scheduled to launch no earlier than Thursday, Dec. 9, at 1 a.m. EST, on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. IXPE is the first satellite dedicated to measuring the polarization of X-rays from a variety of cosmic sources, such as black holes and neutron stars.

“IXPE is filling a data gap in polarized X-rays, which we don’t have a lot of information on,” Perkins said. “This mission is a small part of a bigger picture – a bigger effort – to learn more about the universe and how it works.”

On Tuesday, Dec. 7, NASA will hold an IXPE payload briefing at 1 p.m. and a prelaunch news briefing at 5:30 p.m. Live launch coverage will begin Dec. 9 at 12:30 a.m. All will be broadcast on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.

https://blogs.nasa.gov/kennedy/2021/12/03/spacecraft-rocket-come-together-for-ixpe-mission/

Offline Conexion Espacial

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Some images of the Falcon 9 fairing now sitting in the LC-39A pad hangar awaiting the return of the Falcon 9 after its static fire test.
I publish information in Spanish about space and rockets.
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Offline zubenelgenubi

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Will there be a Static Fire before the launch of IXPE?

Yes: "Headless" Falcon 9 was transported to LC-39A December 4.  The first stage is reported as 1061.5.

Static Fire December 5?



December orbital launches from the Space Coast:
2021 Launched:
Date - Satellite(s) - Rocket - Launch Site - Time (UTC)

December 9 May 31 Sept 15 NET Nov 20 NET 17 Dec 13 - IXPE - Falcon 9-131 130? 129? 130? TBD (1061.5 1062.4? previously flown S) - Kennedy LC-39A - 06:00 06:00-07:30

Scheduled:
Date - Satellite(s) - Rocket - Launch Site - Time (UTC)

2021
December 19 Q2 June Q4 end of year Dec mid Dec - Türksat 5B - Falcon 9-132? TBD (S) - Canaveral SLC-40 / Kennedy LC-39A - 03:58-05:28 likely night EST

December 21 Oct 2 Nov Nov 10 Dec Dec 2 4 late - Dragon SpX-24 - Falcon 9-133? 131? 132? TBD (1062.4? S) - Kennedy LC-39A - 10:06 ~09:00
(ISS flights: 22-26 minutes earlier/day)

Changes on September 23rd, 2020
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zubenelgenubi
« Last Edit: 01/07/2022 09:40 am by zubenelgenubi »
Support your local planetarium! (COVID-panic and forward: Now more than ever.)
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Online Josh_from_Canada

Yes: "Headless" Falcon 9 was transported to LC-39A December 4.
It's been quite some time since a "Headless" Falcon rocket was rolled out to Pad 39A.
Launches Seen: Atlas-V OA-7,

Offline Ken the Bin

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NGA "Rocket Launching" notice.  The "Space Debris" notice hasn't arrived yet.

Backup days December 10 to 14 at the same time as December 9.

Quote from: NGA
040509Z DEC 21
NAVAREA IV 1092/21(18,26).
WESTERN NORTH ATLANTIC.
FLORIDA.
1. HAZARDOUS OPERATIONS, ROCKET LAUNCHING
   090600Z TO 090753Z DEC, ALTERNATE
   0600Z TO 0753Z DAILY 10 THRU 14 DEC
   IN AREAS BOUND BY:
   A. 28-39-02N 080-37-42W, 28-41-00N 080-20-00W,
      28-38-00N 079-42-00W, 28-35-00N 079-43-00W,
      28-33-00N 080-17-00W, 28-33-47N 080-34-05W.
   B. 28-04-00N 074-58-00W, 28-34-00N 074-55-00W,
      28-39-00N 071-40-00W, 28-17-00N 071-06-00W,
      27-41-00N 071-15-00W, 27-33-00N 071-58-00W.
2. CANCEL THIS MSG 140853Z DEC 21.

Offline Ken the Bin

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Here's the "Space Debris" notice:

Quote from: NGA
040541Z DEC 21
NAVAREA XII 685/21(22,83).
EASTERN PACIFIC.
1. HAZARDOUS OPERATIONS, SPACE DEBRIS
   090723Z TO 090914Z DEC, ALTERNATE
   0723Z TO 0914Z DAILY 10 THRU 14 DEC
   IN AREA BOUND BY
   00-28N 123-14W, 01-01N 121-34W,
   01-13N 116-30W, 01-09N 110-20W,
   00-55N 106-47W, 00-27N 104-21W,
   00-05N 104-09W, 00-20S 104-48W,
   01-05S 109-49W, 01-04S 117-05W,
   00-10S 122-48W, 00-04N 123-05W.
2. CANCEL THIS MSG 141014Z DEC 21.

Offline ZachS09

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Is it still mandatory for "headless" Falcon 9 rockets to perform static fires? Or can they already have their payloads mounted beforehand?

Personally, I think it has something to do with AMOS 6 as if it's forever burnt in SpaceX's memory.
Liftoff for St. Jude's! Go Dragon, Go Falcon, Godspeed Inspiration4!

Offline Vettedrmr

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For other than Starlink launches, the general rule is no payload for SFs.
Aviation/space enthusiast, retired control system SW engineer, doesn't know anything!

Offline russianhalo117

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Is it still mandatory for "headless" Falcon 9 rockets to perform static fires? Or can they already have their payloads mounted beforehand?

Personally, I think it has something to do with AMOS 6 as if it's forever burnt in SpaceX's memory.
AFAIU, It is up to the primary customer.
« Last Edit: 12/04/2021 02:52 pm by russianhalo117 »

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