Category Launch Vehicle

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OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Check Out and Early Cruise Phase Activities

It has been awhile since I posted anything to this site. The launch of OSIRIS-REx was such an amazing, emotional experience; it took me about a month to come back down to Earth (pun intended). I have now settled into a normal work routine in Tucson and the team has been busy operating the spacecraft […]

Liftoff of OSIRIS-REx from Pad 41.

OSIRIS-REx – Day 2 in Space

       Our spacecraft continues to operate flawlessly. Kudos to the operations team members who have been tracking and operating the spacecraft since separation! Here are some details on recent status.      After a flawless launch day, day 2 has also progressed as planned.      We have completed the Countup Procedure and the spacecraft has […]

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The Atlas V 411 AV-067: Our Ride to Space

OSIRIS-REx is scheduled for lift-off from Space Launch Complex-41 (SLC-41) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on September 8, 2016 at 7:05 pm EDT. The daily launch window is almost two hours long, extending to 9:00 pm EDT. The entire launch window is 34 days long, extending through October 11, 2016. We certainly hope we […]

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39 Days to Launch – What’s Left to Get Done?

With only 39 days to go until we launch OSIRIS-REx our schedule is packed with activities. Here is a quick rundown of what the team has left to do to get ready to blast this asteroid-sampling robot into space. 8/2: Mission Event Readiness Review – DSN/JPL The Deep Space Network (DSN) is a critical component […]

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The Journey to Kennedy Space Center

The OSIRIS-REx project continues to progress seamlessly through the Assembly, Test, and Launch Operations (ATLO) phase. We are now done with the AT portion of this phase and have started LO. The test phase ended with the completion of the last major environmental test: the thermal vacuum test. With the test program complete, the team […]

Testing for electromagnetic interference/electromagnetic compatibility (EMI/EMC) testing on the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft at Lockheed Martin.

OSIRIS-REx Passes EMI/EMC Testing

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has completed the Electromagnetic Interference/Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMI/EMC) system level test. This test has three objectives. The first objective is to test for Radiated Emissions, which are the release of electromagnetic energy from the spacecraft. To pass this test, the team had to verify that the emissions from the Spacecraft do not violate […]

OSIRIS-REx Solar Array test

OSIRIS-REx Progressing Through Environmental Testing

Our spacecraft continues to make steady progress toward launch in September 2016. During the final stages of assembly, OSIRIS-REx completed final installation of the High Gain Antenna and completed solar array installation. After integrating these components, we completed a solar array illumination test on both arrays. The Spacecraft then passed a cleaning check and was […]

The Xtronaut Kickstarter campaign will help us get our education program to kids and adults all over the world.

Xtronaut – A New Approach to Education and Public Outreach

September 2015 marked an important milestone for the OSIRIS-REx mission. We are now less than one year to launch and only eight months away from shipping the spacecraft down to Kennedy Space Center for integration with the Atlas V launch vehicle. As I recently reported, the spacecraft is in great shape and is almost complete. […]

The System Integration Review was the last major technical review leading up to the KDP-D decision.

OSIRIS-REx Begins ATLO (Assembly, Test, and Launch Operations)!

Yesterday, the OSIRIS-REx mission passed another major milestone – successfully completing Key Decision Point “D” (KDP-D). This decision point is one of five key milestones that we pass through leading up to launch. KDP-D occurred after we had completed a series of independent reviews that cover the technical readiness, schedule, and cost of the project. […]

The launch vehicle capability and the mission profile set the wet-mass for a spacecraft mission. Image: Lockheed Martin

The OSIRIS-REx Heavy Launch Opportunity

As recent press articles have discussed, the OSIRIS-REx team has been busy performing a special study related to our launch mass and propellant load. The objective of this study is to look at ways to increase the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft delta-V capability as much as possible without impacting the current spacecraft or launch vehicle designs. Delta-V […]