Mission News

WISE Launch Rescheduled for December 14
WISE in the fairing mate WISE is shown inside one-half of the nose cone, or fairing, that will protect it during launch. The spacecraft is clamped to the top of the rocket above the white conical fitting. The fairing will split open like a clamshell about five minutes after launch. Image credit: United Launch Alliance/ JPL-Caltech
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(Dec. 10, 2009) - The launch of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission is now rescheduled for Dec. 14, with a launch window of 6:09 to 6:23 a.m. PST (9:09 to 9:23 a.m. EST). The first launch attempt scheduled for Dec. 11 was delayed due to an anomaly in the motion of a booster steering engine.

Mission managers have implemented a plan to completely resolve the anomaly. This plan includes removing and replacing a suspect component on Friday, Dec. 11, allowing the Delta II to be ready for Monday’s launch attempt. The current weather forecast calls for an 80 percent chance of acceptable weather during the launch window.

WISE will circle Earth over the poles, scanning the entire sky one-and-a-half times in nine months. The mission will uncover hidden cosmic objects, including the coolest stars, dark asteroids and the most luminous galaxies.

More information is online at http://www.nasa.gov/wise, http://wise.astro.ucla.edu, and http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/wise.

Whitney Clavin 818-354-4673
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.