This is an invitation to attend our chat room event, where we will be covering the launch of the U.S. Air Force-provided Minotaur V rocket launching the NASA's LADEE (Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer) spacecraft set to study the Moon's tenuous atmosphere and dust from the Lunar orbit.
Mission Type: Orbiter Launch Vehicle: Minotaur V Launch Site: Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, United States NASA Center: Ames Research Center Spacecraft Mass: 383 kg Spacecraft Power: 295 W Project Manager: Butler P. Hine, III, Ames Research Center Total Cost: Total mission cost is $263 million. Launch window: 03:27-03:31 a.m. UTC/GMT on 7th (11:27-11:31 p.m. EST/EDT on 6th) Launch site: Pad 0B, Wallops Island, Va.
NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE, pronounced like "laddie") is a robotic mission that will orbit the moon to gather detailed information about the lunar atmosphere, conditions near the surface and environmental influences on lunar dust. A thorough understanding of these characteristics will address long-standing unknowns, and help scientists understand other planetary bodies as well.
The LADEE mission is divided into mission phases: Launch, Ascent, Activation and Checkout, Phasing Orbits, Lunar Orbit Insertion, Commissioning, Science, and Decommissioning. Once launched, LADEE will enter a series of phasing orbits, which allows the spacecraft to arrive at the moon at the proper time and phase. This approach accommodates any dispersion in the Minotaur V launch injection.
Chat event will be hosted in our main chat room, The Pod Bay, where we will discuss this event and post links to live streams covering the launch. The chat room event will start on the time of the live launch coverage on NASA TV and pre-launch webcast on NASA EDGE on Sep. 7, 2013 at 1:30 a.m. UTC/GMT (that's on Sep. 6, 2013 at 9:30 p.m. launch site time EST/EDT!).