Monthly Newsletter

24 January 2003

Estimated Times (EST) for Events:
  • 1/24, 9:00 am Launch Readiness Reviews (KSC)
  • 1/24, 11:00 am NASA Press Briefing (KSC)
  • 1/25, 2:00 pm NASA Television Coverage Begins
  • 1/25, 2:12 pm L-1011 takes off
  • 1/25, 3:14 pm SORCE Launch
  • 1/25, 3:14 pm 1st Stage Ignites
  • 1/25, 3:15 pm 2nd Stage Ignites
  • 1/25, 3:21 pm 3rd Stage Ignites
  • 1/25, 3:24 pm Spacecraft Separation
  • 1/25, 3:25 pm First signal from SORCE
  • 1/25, 3:45 pm First contact (high data rate)
  • 2/25 Beginning of science operations
  • 3/25 Release of first science data

The launch begins with the drop of the Pegasus rocket from the L-1011 over the Atlantic Ocean at an altitude of 39,000 feet at a location approximately 100 miles offshore from KSC. After falling a few seconds, the spacecraft’s engines will power on and lift it into orbit. Spacecraft separation from the Pegasus occurs approximately 10 minutes after the initial drop. At that time the satellite will be in an orbit of 400 statute miles at a 40-degree inclination, orbiting the Earth 15 times each day.
Reminder – For those interested in viewing the live coverage of the launch on the internet, NASA TV is serviced by several World Wide Web sources. To find out what internet companies are covering NASA TV, go to:, for a listing of the web sources. If you do not have Real Player, the best web source for viewing NASA TV is NASA Spaceflight Web. They use Windows Media Player, which is installed on most Windows-based PCs and is free of charge. The website is The SORCE website is also an excellent source for the information you need –

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