NASA plans to launch two suborbital sounding rockets this week from the agency’s launch range on Wallops Island in Virginia.
A Terrier-Improved Malemute rocket is scheduled for launch on Friday, followed by a Talos-Terrier-Oriole on Saturday. The launch window for both missions is 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. EDT.
Terrier-Improved Malemute mission
For the first launch, four university experiments will be flown as part of an educational project called RockSat-X, which is designed to provide students hands-on experience in designing, fabricating, testing and conducting experiments for space flight. The project is a joint effort between NASA and the Colorado Space Grant Consortium.
The selected experiments for this year’s RockSat-X launch are from Baylor University, University of Colorado at Boulder, the University of Puerto Rico and Virginia Tech.
The experiments will fly on the two-stage rocket to a projected altitude of 98 miles. After the 15-minute flight, the payload, carrying the experiments, will land in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 66 miles off the coast of Virginia. The 875-pound payload will be recovered for re-use and experiment analysis.
The second mission will be the first flight of the Talos-Terrier-Oriole, which is being developed to support high altitude space science research.
The three-stage, 65-foot tall vehicle is projected to lift its 1,664 pound payload to approximately 176 miles above the Earth. After a 10-minute flight, the payload is expected land in the Atlantic Ocean about 300 miles off the Wallops Island coast. The payload will not be recovered.
The Terrier-Improved Malemute launch may be seen in the Wallops area. The Talos-Terrier-Oriole launch may be visible to observers on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, the three lower counties on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and southern Delaware.
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