SpaceX Scrubs Falcon 9 GPS Launch to Dec. 19 After Fueling Glitch: Photos, Watch Live

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
venting liquid oxygen in the final minutes of countdown for launch on Dec. 18,
2018 until temperature issue forced 24 hour scrub to Dec. 19 for 9:07 a.m. EST liftoff
of advanced
GPS
III SV01 mission for the US Air Force
from
Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL.  Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
Ken Kremer  SpaceUpClose.com &
RocketSTEM
–18 December 2018


CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, FL- SpaceX engineers
scrubbed this mornings launch (Dec. 18)  of a Falcon 9 rocket from the Florida Space
Coast after encountering a temperature fueling glitch in the final minutes of
the countdown – forcing a 24 hour delay from Tuesday to Wednesday, Dec. 19. 



The abort occurred at the T minus 7 minute mark as teams were
loading the rockets propellants in anticipation of blastoff of the
next and last SpaceX
Falcon 9 of 2018 carrying the maiden modernized and advanced GPS III SV01 satellite
for the Air Force. It had been slated for blastoff Tuesday, Dec. 18 at 9:11
a.m. EST,
14:11 GMT, from Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air
Force Station, FL.



The 2nd stage LOX loading was just being completed and the team was
about to begin the Falcon 9 engine chill prior to launch.



“Hold,
Hold, Hold”, was called out to scrub the launch at about 9:29 a.m. EST
.  


“SpaceX team called a hold due to an out of
family reading on first stage sensors. Vehicle and payload remain healthy; next
launch attempt is tomorrow at 9:07 EST, 14:07 UTC,” SpaceX tweeted soon
thereafter.



The second stage of the 23 story tall rocket
had been vigorously venting liquid oxygen as normal.  



Enjoy our gallery of
Space UpClose photos showing the vigorous venting at launch pad 40 as well as more
photos taken this afternoon during our media camera setup taken at pad 40 this afternoon,
Dec. 18. 

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
venting liquid oxygen in the final minutes of countdown for launch on Dec. 18,
2018 until temperature issue forced 24 hour scrub to Dec. 19 for 9:07 a.m. EST liftoff
of advanced
GPS
III SV01 mission for the US Air Force
from
Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL.  Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

It
was the second significant problem of the day. The first was related to weather.
The Falcon 9 launch had already been retargeted earlier this morning to a point
near the end of the launch window due to excessive ‘Upper level winds.”

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
venting liquid oxygen in the final minutes of countdown for launch on Dec. 18,
2018 until temperature issue forced 24 hour scrub to Dec. 19 for 9:07 a.m. EST liftoff
of advanced
GPS
III SV01 mission for the US Air Force
from
Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL.  Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The weather outlook remains quite favorable – currently
forecast as 80% GO !!



The Falcon 9 launch window lasts for 26 minutes
and extends from 9:07 a.m.,
14:11 GMT, to 9:33 a.m. EST Dec. 19. 



You can watch the launch on a SpaceX dedicated
webcast that starts about 15 minutes
prior to the opening of the nominal
launch window at:



www.spacex.com/webcast



SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
poised at night on Dec. 17 for liftoff on
GPS III SV01 mission for the US Air Force from Space Launch Complex-40 on
Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL, on Dec. 19, 2018 at 9:07 am EST.
Expendable booster will not be recovered and lacks grid fins and landing legs.
Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The Falcon 9 will launch in the upgraded Block 5
version on an expendable mission where the first stage booster will not be
recovered.  There are no grid fins or
landing legs installed on the 15 story tall first stage.



This is the first Block 5 model that will launch
in an expendable configuration and not be soft landed either by land or by sea. 



Up Close view of nose cone
atop SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket poised for launch now reset for liftoff
on
GPS III SV01 mission for
the US Air Force
from Space
Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL, on Dec. 19, 2018 at 9:07
am EST. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The Air Force wants every drop of fuel available
to hurl the GPS III SV01 satellite to the most efficient orbit and maximize the
amount of on-board fuel available and minimize the satellites need to utilize
the fuel reserves for orbit raising maneuvers.



SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
poised for liftoff carrying
GPS III SV01 mission for the
US Air Force
from Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force
Station, FL, on Dec. 19, 2018.  Credit:
Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The satellite will be deployed to medium Earth
orbit approximately 1 hour and 56 minutes after liftoff.



The GPS III satellites has a wet weight of 9700
pounds (
4,400 kilograms) and
is the size of an SUV.



Up Close view of nose cone
atop SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket poised for launch now reset liftoff
on
GPS III SV01 mission for
the US Air Force
from Space
Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL, on Dec. 19, 2018 at 9:07
am EST. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

From the SpaceX Press Kit:


The United States’ Global Positioning System
delivers positioning, navigation, and timing services supporting vital U.S. and
allied operations worldwide, and underpins critical financial, transportation,
and agricultural infrastructure that billions of users have come to depend on
daily. 



The United States Air Force’s first GPS III
satellite will augment the current constellation of 31 operational GPS
satellites. This newest generation of GPS satellites is designed and built to
deliver positioning, navigation, and timing information with three times better
accuracy, and up to eight times improved antijamming capability. GPS is used by
over four billion users and supports critical missions worldwide. 







GPS is a National Security Space (NSS) mission,
critical to national defense. In April 2016, SpaceX was awarded its first NSS
mission, GPS III SV01. SpaceX currently has an additional four GPS III missions
on contract, all of which will be launched on Falcon 9.



Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA,
Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and more space and mission reports
direct from the Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida
and Wallops Flight Facility, Virginia.



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



Dr. Kremer
is a research scientist, journalist and photographer based in the KSC area.



………….

Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events



Learn more about the upcoming/recent SpaceX Falcon 9/USAF GPS 3-01, SpaceX Falcon 9/CRS-16
launch to ISS,  NASA missions, ULA Atlas
& Delta launches, SpySats and more at Ken’s upcoming outreach events at Quality Inn Kennedy Space Center, Titusville,
FL, evenings:



Dec
18
: “SpaceX Dragon CRS-16
resupply launch to ISS, SpaceX Falcon GPS 3-01, SpaceX Falcon Heavy &
Falcon 9 launches, upcoming SpaceX Falcon 9 USAF GP3 3-01, NRO & USAF
Spysats, SLS, Orion, Boeing and SpaceX Commercial crew capsules, OSIRIS-Rex,
Juno at Jupiter, InSight Mars lander, Curiosity and Opportunity explore Mars,
NH at Pluto, Kuiper Belt and more,” Kennedy Space Center Quality Inn, Titusville,
FL, evenings. Photos for sale




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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