Feeds

Dawn mission hiding out after lightning threat

Well, slightly postponed

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Brief The threat of lightning has forced NASA to postpone the launch of the Dawn mission to the asteroid belt by 24 hours.

The warning came as engineers were preparing to fuel the Delta II rocket that will carry the probe into orbit and beyond.

The temperature of the rocket's second stage had also risen too high to allow fuelling to begin, so engineers are now pumping cool air into the aerodynamic cover, or fairing, to get the temperature back down to 58 of those American degrees Fahrenheit. That is 14.5°C in real money.

The mission is due to launch on Sunday 8 July atop a Delta II rocket, and the countdown dress rehearsal is due to start today, Friday.

But the prospects are not great for Sunday's launch: weather forecasters say there is a 60 per cent chance that conditions will not meet those required by the space agency's stringent safety guidelines. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Brit amateur payload set to complete full circle around PLANET EARTH
Ultralight solar radio tracker in glorious 25,000km almost-space odyssey
Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low
Cheshire cat effect see neutrons and their properties walk different paths
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.