United Launch Alliance's Delta II second stage hangs in the gantry at Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg AFB.
Joining the Pieces
The first and second stages of ULA's Delta II rocket are shown here ready to be mated at Vandenberg AFB's Space Launch Complex 2. The spacecraft is set to launch the JPSS-1, NOAA's next-gen environmental satellite system in 2017.
Blastoff Ready Rocket
ULA's Delta II rocket can be seen standing on Space Launch Complex 2 in preparation for the 2017 launch of NOAA's newest environmental satellite system.
Protecting the Goods
A collaborative project between NOAA and NASA, JPSS-1 is the first of four next-gen environmental satellites. JPSS-1 was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. Here, the satellite is encased in a protective container at the Astrotech Processing Facility at Vandenberg AFB.
Encased for the Journey
The payload fairing encompasses the JPSS-1 on top of the Delta II rocket in preparation for the planned Nov. 14, 2017 launch.
Hitching a Ride
A P-POD (Poly Picosatellite Orbital Deployer) container is attached to the JPSS-1 spacecraft. P-PODS are extra payloads, these containing CubeSats designed and built by students as part of NASA's Educational Launch of Nanosatellite missions.
Managers and engineers from NASA, as well as contractors, track countdown rehearsal for the JPSS-1 launch.
Meet the Press
NASA and industry leaders participated in a prelaunch press conference at Vandenberg AFB. Participants, from left, are Steve Volz, director of NOAA’s Satellite and Information Service, Greg Mandt, director of the NOAA Joint Polar Satellite System Program, Sandra Smalley, director of the Joint Agency Satellite Division at NASA Headquarters, Omar Baez, NASA launch director, and Scott Messer, United Launch Alliance program manager for NASA missions.
Time Grows Near
As United Launch Alliance's Delta II rocket with the JPSS-1 safely aboard stands on the Space Launch Complex 2 launch pad, the Mobile Service Tower is rolled away.
The Mobile Service Tower is removed in preparation for the Delta II rocket launch.