The fourth SpaceX cargo mission, under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services contract, to the International Space Station (ISS) is set for launch on September 20 (Saturday).
The cargo will blast off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida carrying the ISS-RapidScat scatterometer instrument, which is designed and developed by Jet Propulsion Laboratory at NASA in Pasadena, California.
According to the people related to the project, the launch date was adjusted by one-day in order to make the preparatory arrangement of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
The ISS-RapidScat instrument (inset) will provide details related to measurement of ocean surface wind speed, their direction, improved weather forecasts, including monitoring hurricanes.
It will be installed at the end of the Columbus laboratory of ISS.
The Falcon 9 rocket will kick off at 11:16 pm PDT on September 19 (2:16am EDT at September 20) carrying the Dragon cargo spacecraft laden with over 5,000 pounds of scientific experiments and supplies.
NASA’s television coverage of the launch will begin at 10:15pm PDT (1:15am EDT).
According to the NASA, in case the launch is postponed for any reason the rocket will be kicked off on Saturday (September 20), at 10:53 pm PDT (Sunday, September 21, at approximately 1:53am EDT).
The US space agency will be hosting a series of prelaunch news conferences on Thursday and Friday (September 18 and 19) at its Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The press briefing will be covered live on NASA TV and its website.
The NASA researchers and scientists will talk about several scientific researches, including RapidScat, 3-D printing at zero gravity and technology to gauge bone density and model organism research using fruit flies, plants and rodents during the panel discussions on September 18 at 6:00am, 7:00am and 8:00am PDT (9:00am, 10:00am and 11:00am EDT).