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MESSENGER Update
MESSENGER Update
21 Jun 2004
(Source: Kennedy Space Center)

SPACECRAFT AND EXPENDABLE VEHICLES STATUS REPORT
June 21, 2004

George H. Diller
NASA Kennedy Space Center
321-867-2468

MISSION: MESSENGER
LAUNCH VEHICLE: Delta II Heavy
LAUNCH PAD: 17-B Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
LAUNCH DATE: July 30, 2004
LAUNCH WINDOW: 2:17:44 a.m. - 2:17:56 a.m. EDT

MESSENGER is undergoing prelaunch testing at the Astrotech Space Operations facilities near Kennedy Space Center.

The spacecraft's two solar arrays are undergoing cleaning today in preparation for installation on June 24 -25. One array will be installed each day. After an array is installed, a deployment test is conducted. Installation of thermal blankets continues. Spacecraft propellant loading is currently scheduled for June 29 - July 2. Spacecraft spin balance testing is planned for July 7.

Autonomy testing of the spacecraft has been successfully completed. This verified that MESSENGER can operate on its own when not in direct contact with Earth.

The stacking of the Boeing Delta II launch vehicle on pad 17-B is currently planned to begin one week after the launch of the Delta II carrying the Air Force Global Positioning Satellite occurs.

There are no technical issues or concerns with MESSENGER or its associated Delta II at this time.

The launch period for MESSENGER extends through Aug. 13.

MESSENGER was built for NASA by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md.

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Last Updated: 21 Jun 2004