Faulty Second Stage Sensor Scrubs SpaceX Falcon 9 Launch of GovSat-1, Reset to Jan 31: Photos

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying GovSat-1/SES-16
is poised for liftoff at pad 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.  Launch targeted for Jan. 31, 2018.  Credit: Ken Kremer/SpaceUpClose.com/www.kenkremer.com
Ken Kremer     SpaceUpClose.com    30 Jan 2018









CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, FL – Todays launch of GovSat-1 on a reused
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket was scrubbed when the launch team detected a faulty
sensor in the vehicles second stage about 90 minutes prior to Tuesday’s targeted
launch time.

GovSat-1 was developed as a joint venture in a public-private
partnership between the Government of Luxembourg and satellite operator SES. 

The faulty sensor is being replaced and forced a 24 hour postponement to
Wednesday, Jan. 31.










The SpaceX launch team has rescheduled the launch to occur 1 day later
within the same launch window.



“Standing
down for today,” SpaceX tweeted.



“Team
is going to replace a second stage sensor. Next available launch opportunity is
tomorrow, January 31.”



Liftoff of the recycled single stick Falcon 9 carrying GovSat-1 is now scheduled for Wednesday, Jan.
31, 2018 at
4:25 p.m. EST (2125
GMT) from seaside
Space Launch Complex-40
(SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.



Extremely brisk ground winds
and upper altitude winds had also threated to delay the launch. But in the end it
came down to a sensor glitch.  

The weather outlook is
significantly improved for Wednesday with a 90% chance of acceptable conditions
vs. only 40% acceptable on Tuesday.







SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying GovSat-1/SES-16
is poised for liftoff at pad 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.  Launch targeted for Jan. 31, 2018.  Credit: Ken Kremer/SpaceUpClose.com/www.kenkremer.com



The rocket will be lowered horizontal at pad 40 so technicians can swap
out the bad port for a new one. After checkout it will then be raised again to
vertical launch position



The two stage 229-foot-tall (70-meter-tall) SpaceX Falcon 9
rocket will deliver GovSat-1/SES-16 to a geosynchronous transfer orbit for
GovSat – the SES and Luxembourg government joint venture.


GovSat-1, also known as SES-16, is the first satellite of
GovSat. It is uniquely
designed for exclusive use by governments and
institutions – including m
ilitary, humanitarian and maritime users.



The highly
flexible payload featuring advanced encryption and anti-jamming capabilities.



The over 4.5 ton GovSat-1/SES-16 communications satellite launching
Tuesday is a 50:50 joint venture between the Government of Luxembourg and the commercial firm SES, the
worlds leading satellite operator.





SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying GovSat-1/SES-16
is poised for liftoff at pad 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.  Launch targeted for Jan. 31, 2018.  Credit: Ken Kremer/SpaceUpClose.com/www.kenkremer.com

You
can watch the launch live on a SpaceX dedicated webcast starting about 15
minutes prior to the 4:25
p.m. EDT (2025
GMT)
liftoff time.

Watch the SpaceX broadcast live at:  SpaceX.com/webcast 

The GovSat-1
launch window at pad 40 extends for a little over two full hours. The window
opens at 4:25
p.m. EST (2125 GMT) and extends
until closing at 6:46 p.m. EST, or 2346 GMT.

GovSat-1 will be located
at the 21.5 degrees East orbital slot. 

It will serve Europe,
the Middle East and Africa, including substantial maritime coverage over the
Mediterranean and Baltic seas, and the Atlantic and Indian Oceans.





In contrast to most recent launches, this ‘flight-proven’ Falcon
9 will not be recovered.

However it is equipped with a quarteet of grid fins and
landing legs and will guided to carry out the descent recovery sequence and make
a soft ocean landing – minus the drone ship.

The recycled first stage for the GovSat-1 mission was previously
used to launch the NROL-76 spy satellite on a classified mission for the National
Reconnaissance Office  (NRO) from LC-39A
in May 2017.

Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of SpaceX Falcon
9 & Heavy, NASA,  ULA and more
space mission reports direct
from the Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.

Stay tuned here for Ken’s continuing
Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news: www.kenkremer.com –www.specupclose.com –
twitter @ken_kremer –
ken
at kenkremer.com

Ken Kremer

Ken Kremer

Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and more space and mission reports direct from Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Stay tuned here for Ken's continuing Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news. Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about space topics. Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events.

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