AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch SMAP on a Delta II 7320 rocket from Vandenberg AFB, CA
scheduled for:
31 Jan 15 14:22:00 GMT
31 Jan 15 6:22:00 PST
31 Jan 15 9:22:00 Eastern

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Dazzling Delta II Delivers SMAP to Orbit in Stunning Pre-Dawn Ascent

Beginning its 26th year of operational service, the 153rd Delta II roars into the darkness from Space Launch Complex (SLC)-2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on 31 January 2015. Photo Credit: NASA TV

Continuing a proud heritage of near-perfect mission success, which stretches back across more than a quarter-century, the 153rd Delta II […]

PHOTOS: Delta-II Ready for SMAP Launch Attempt #2 From California Saturday Morning

The ULA Delta-II tasked with launching NASA’s SMAP Earth Science satellite / mission. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

Mother Nature and a relatively minor technical issue forced ULA to keep their Delta-II rocket, and NASA’s SMAP satellite, grounded at Vandenberg Air Force Base in southern California the last few days, but as of […]

NASA's SMAP Environmental Watcher Ready for Thursday Launch Atop Delta II

The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) spacecraft undergoes checkout in Astrotech’s payload processing facility at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. Photo Credit: ULA

For the 153rd time in its quarter-century of operational service, the thunderous roar of a Delta II booster will rattle Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on Thursday, 29 January, carrying NASA’s […]

SMAP, Aquarius, and Our Planet’s Water Cycle: Another Step Forward in Solving Climate Puzzle

NASA JPL Earth Science Senior Research Scientist Dr. Simon Yueh has played an important role in several Earth Science missions, including the upcoming SMAP mission launching from Vandenberg AFB on Jan. 29. Photo Credit: Chris Howell / AmericaSpace

A meeting in two parts with NASA/JPL’s SMAP Project Scientist/Aquarius Project Scientist (scatterometer) Dr. […]

Impressive 13 Missions On Tap for ULA in 2015

The MUOS-3 payload, encapsulated within its bulbous payload fairing, is readied for installation atop the Atlas V 551. This will be the first of 13 missions planned by United Launch Alliance (ULA) in 2015. Photo Credit: ULA

As it enters its ninth year of operations since its formation as a merger between Boeing and […]

NASA’s Upcoming SMAP Mission Critical to Understanding Earth’s Soil Moisture Influence on Weather and Climate

NASA's Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission will produce high-resolution global maps of soil moisture to track water availability around our planet and guide policy decisions.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission will produce high-resolution global maps of soil moisture to track water availability around our planet and guide policy decisions. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Five new earth science missions launched in the last 12 months will wrap up with liftoff of NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission at the […]

NASA’s Revolutionary Dawn Spacecraft Begins Final Approach Phase to Dwarf Planet Ceres

This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Dawn spacecraft heading toward the dwarf planet Ceres. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech See below Dawn’s 1st resolved image of Ceres!

After a seven-year trek, and at the dawn of a new year, NASA’s revolutionary Dawn spacecraft has begun the final approach phase to dwarf planet Ceres for an unprecedented examination of […]

MESSENGER Gets Small Reprieve Prior to End of Mission in 2015

Artist’s impression of MESSENGER in orbit around Mercury. Following a highly successful decade-long mission, the spacecraft will eventually face its demise while crashing on Mercury’s surface, sometime next spring. Image Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington

The coming of the New Year is a time for celebration and reflection on […]

NASA's SMAP Mission Arrives at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Begins Final Preparations for Early 2015 Launch

Scheduled for launch in early 2015, NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive, or SMAP mission, will track Earth’s water into one of its last hiding places: the soil. SMAP soil moisture data will, among other things, aid in predictions of agricultural productivity, weather and climate. Image Credit: NASA

“Follow the water”: This theme has driven […]

Delta II Returns to Flight With Dazzling OCO-2 Launch

With the glow of its RS-27A first-stage engine and trio of Solid Rocket Motors (SRMs) piercing the gloom and murk, the first Delta II in almost three years takes flight from a foggy Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. Photo Credit: Robert C. Fisher/AmericaSpace

More than five years since its predecessor was lost in the […]