Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The labor of launching a rocket. #GPS2F10 launched as #BabyK prepped for arrival. #ULA #AtlasV

After a sleepless night, we headed to the hospital on the morning of July 15th expecting both a rocket launch and a baby launch. With contractions steadily progressing, we didn't know if we would catch the launch. At the beginning of the launch window, we were in between contractions so we took our positions by the hospital window. The rocket launched right on time and unfortunately we couldn't see if from Melbourne. However, I did get to see this particular rocket up close on one of our legislative tours of KSC/CCAFS. We went up to the top deck of ULA's Vertical Integration Facility (VIF) and were able to look down at the rocket before the payload was added. We saw the rocket on multiple platform levels with the most bizarre floor numbers. We even got to stick our heads pretty close to the RD-180 engines on the ground floor and read the Cyrillic print "РД-180" in red paint. To finish the story, after a long labor, Rafael Neil Kobrick was born on the next day at 0030, July 16th, the anniversary of the Apollo 11 launch to the Moon! It happened to be a new moon that night and a very busy hospital.
The Atlas V patiently waits for it's payload to be delivered at LC-41. We went to the very top floor (just under the yellow crane, but not up by the ULA logo) and what a view of the Cape! Photos were not allowed inside/outside the VIF, but check out the video below.

"Is that a rocket in your pocket?"
"No, it's in the palm of my hand."

Can you guess the date of the photo?
The little Canadian flag lapel pin may give away that it is July 1st.
Not exactly the 'launch window' we were expecting. I actually had helped set up a tour with launch viewing for a group for this day as well. It's a good thing I handed over the materials the day before!

The official stats:
July 15 Atlas 5   •  GPS 2F-10
Launch time: 1536 GMT (11:36 a.m. EDT)
Launch site: SLC-41, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida

A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket, designated AV-055, launched the U.S. Air Force's 10th Block 2F navigation satellite for the Global Positioning System. The rocket flew in the 401 vehicle configuration with a four-meter fairing, no solid rocket boosters and a single-engine Centaur upper stage. Delayed from June 16, June 30 and July 14. Read our full story. [July 15]


No comments:

Post a Comment