January 29, 1999
KSC Contact: George H. Diller
KSC Release No. 9-99
Note to Editors/News Directors:
STARDUST SCHEDULED FOR LAUNCH ON DELTA ROCKET FEB. 6
The launch of NASA's Stardust spacecraft aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket
is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 6, 1999. There is a single instantaneous
launch opportunity available that day at 4:06:42 p.m. EST. The next
available window is on Sunday, Feb. 7 at 4:04:15 p.m. EST. Liftoff will
occur from Pad A at Launch Complex 17 on Cape Canaveral Air Station.
Stardust will fly through the dust cloud that surrounds the nucleus of a
comet-and for the first time ever, bring cometary material back to earth.
The spacecraft will also collect interstellar dust from a recently
discovered flow of particles that passes through our solar system from
interstellar space. Comets may be the oldest, most primitive bodies in
the solar system, a preserved record of the original nebula that formed
the Sun and the planets.
The Stardust spacecraft has completed final checkout at KSC and was mated
to the Boeing Delta II at the launch pad on Jan. 28. The Delta fairing is
be installed around the spacecraft on Feb. 2.
PRELAUNCH NEWS CONFERENCE
A prelaunch news conference is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 5 at 2 p.m. EST
in the KSC News Center auditorium. Participating in the briefing will be:
Dr. Carl Pilcher, Science Director, Solar System Exploration
Ray Lugo, NASA Launch Manager
Kennedy Space Center
Rich Murphy, Delta Mission Director/Flight Director
The Boeing Company
Dr. Kenneth Atkins, Stardust Project Manager/Spacecraft Mission Director
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Joseph Vellinga, Stardust Program Manager
Lockheed Martin Astronautics
Dr. Donald Brownlee, Stardust Principal Investigator
University of Washington
Joel Tumbiolo, Launch Weather Officer
Department of the Air Force
A post-launch news conference will also be held on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 6
p.m. in the KSC News Center auditorium. The status of the Stardust
spacecraft will be provided by the spacecraft mission director at that
Those media without permanent accreditation who wish to cover the launch
of Stardust including the prelaunch news conference on L-1 day should
send a letter of request to the NASA-KSC News Center on news organization
letterhead. It should include name, birth date and Social Security number
or passport number. Letters should be faxed to 407/867-2692 or addressed
Stardust Launch Accreditation
Kennedy Space Center, FL 32899
Stardust mission badges may be picked up at the NASA-KSC News Center
between 8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. beginning Monday, Feb. 1. On Friday, Feb. 5,
mission badges may also be picked up at the news media Pass &
Identification Building located at Gate 2 on State Road 3 between 11 a.m.
and 2 p.m. On launch day, Feb. 6, Stardust mission badges will be
available at Gate 1 on Cape Canaveral Air Station located on SR 401
starting at 2:15 p.m. prior to departure for Press Site 1. A Stardust
mission badge is required for all news media covering the launch from
Press Site 1.
For further information on Stardust launch accreditation contact Lisa
Fowler at the NASA News Center at 407/867-2468.
On Friday, Feb. 5 at 3 p.m., a NASA van will depart from the NASA-KSC
News Center for Launch Complex 17 for media photographers who wish to
establish remote cameras at Pad 17-A.
PHOTO OPPORTUNITY AT LAUNCH COMPLEX 17
A photo opportunity of the Delta launch vehicle for Stardust will be
available at Pad 17-A after tower rollback. Media wishing to participate
will depart the Gate 1 Pass & Identification Building on Cape Canaveral
Air Station at 10 a.m. on launch day, Saturday, Feb. 6.
LAUNCH DAY PRESS COVERAGE
On Feb. 6, media covering the launch should meet at the Gate 1 Pass &
Identification Building on Cape Canaveral Air Station. The convoy
departure for Press Site 1 will be at 2:30 p.m. After launch, media may
leave via Gate 1. Those wishing to attend the post-launch press
conference can be escorted from Press Site 1 on Cape Canaveral Air
Station to the NASA News Center at KSC after spacecraft separation
The NASA-KSC News Center will be open on launch day from 9 a.m. until 7
NASA TELEVISION AND V CIRCUIT COVERAGE
NASA Television will carry the prelaunch news conference starting at 2
p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 5. On launch day, countdown coverage will begin
at 2:30 p.m. EST and conclude after spacecraft separation from the Delta
rocket occurs approximately 28 minutes later. A post-launch news
conference will also be carried starting at 6 p.m. EST.
NASA Television is available on GE-2, transponder 9C located at 85
degrees West longitude. Audio only of Stardust events will also be
available on the "V" circuits which may be dialed directly at
407/867-1220, 1240, 1260, 7135, 4003, 4920.
RECORDED PRELAUNCH STATUS REPORTS
The NASA-KSC codaphone will carry Stardust prelaunch status reports
beginning at L-5 days, on Monday, Feb. 1 and may be dialed at