Launch window and location:

 

GPS III SV02 is currently targeting Thursday, August 22. The updated launch window hasn’t been announced yet. GPS III will be launching from Cape Canaveral AFS, SLC-37B atop a Delta IV rocket in its Medium+ (4,2) configuration. This will be the final single-stick Delta IV launch.


Booster landing:

There will be NO booster landing. ULA vehicles are expendable.


Weather forecast:

The 45th Space Wing typically begins issuing launch weather forecasts around three days before launch.

Links:


Where to watch:

Our launch viewing guide should be complete soon. But in the meantime, check out these great launch viewing guides:

Our recommendations for this launch:

  • Playalinda Beach is around 9 miles north of SLC-37B and is an incredibly popular viewing location, so get there early!

  • Max Brewer Bridge is another decent choice for launch viewing. Located just over 15 miles from the pad, you can get some decent views of the launch by going up to the top of the bridge.

  • Space View Park is just over 15 miles from SLC-37B and is a popular viewing location for it’s relatively clear line of sight to the pad and volunteers broadcasting the live launch countdown.

  • KSC Viewing can get a little pricey but gets you as close as possible to the launch while providing a lot of amenities. Tickets aren’t being sold just yet but we will update this when they do.

  • Exploration Tower usually offers VIP launch viewing from its 7th-floor observation deck and is located around 9 miles south of SLC-37B. This elevated location should provide a clear line of sight to the launch pad. Tickets are typically around $15 - $30, we will update this page when they’re available.

  • Jetty Park is just under 9 miles south of SLC-37B and is also a very popular viewing location. You can get the best views of launch by walking out to the end of the pier.


IMPORTANT NOTICES:

  • FL-401 is PERMANENTLY CLOSED for launch viewing, though traffic is still permitted.


Launch360 crew location:

TBD.


watch live online:

The ULA livestream typically begins around 45 minutes prior to launch. NASA TV won’t be broadcasting this launch.

  • Official ULA Livestream (link coming soon)



launch hazard and NOTAM:

The 45th Space Wing will issue the launch hazard area as we get closer to launch.

Click here for a general launch restriction nautical chart from NOAA.


About Delta IV:

Delta IV Medium+ render from ULA.

Delta IV Medium+ render from ULA.

“The Delta IV launch system is available in three configurations: the Delta IV Medium+, with two or four solid rocket motors (SRMs), and the Delta IV Heavy. Each configuration is comprised of a common booster core (CBC), a cryogenic upper stage and a 5-meter-diameter payload fairing (PLF).

The Delta IV Heavy employs two additional CBCs as liquid rocket boosters to augment the first-stage CBC.

The payload fairing (PLF) provides a controlled, safe environment for spacecraft during ascent… Delta IV offers a 5-meter-diameter PLF, optimized for the configuration and mission need. The Delta IV Medium uses a standard carbon composite bisector design. The Delta IV Heavy is available with an elongated carbon-composite bisector or metallic trisector PLF.

Design simplicity and demonstrated capability define the Delta IV RS-68A main engine. Designed and manufactured by Aerojet Rocketdyne, the throttleable RS-68A engine is the largest existing hydrogen-burning engine. Conceived using a simplified design approach, it has fewer parts, is lower risk and has inherently reliable operation.

For additional thrust at liftoff, the Delta IV Medium+ uses either two or four Orbital ATK solid rocket motors (SRMs). The SRMs are strapped to the common booster core and jettisoned in-flight for maximum performance.

Both the Atlas V and the Delta IV rely on the RL10 propulsion system to power their second stages. Logging an impressive record of nearly 400 successful flights and nearly 700 firings in space, RL10 engines, manufactured by Aerojet Rocketdyne, harness the power of high-energy liquid hydrogen. The RL10 boasts a precision control system and restart capability to accurately place payloads into orbit.

The Delta IV employs the RL10B with the world’s largest carbon-carbon extendible nozzle for increased performance.”

(from ULA)


About GPS III:

An artist rendering of a GPS III satellite in orbit. Picture from the US Air Force.

An artist rendering of a GPS III satellite in orbit.
Picture from the US Air Force.

“United Launch Alliance will use an Delta IV rocket to launch the second Global Positioning System III (GPS III) satellite built by Lockheed Martin for the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. GPS III represents the next step in modernization of the worldwide navigation network with a new generation of advanced satellites offering improved accuracy, better anti-jam resiliency and a new signal for civil users.”

(from ULA)



Launch360 updates:

  • The Launch360 crew will be unable to answer any questions on launch day due to low connectivity at the viewing site.

  • We’ve been working hard to complete our launch viewing guide and should hopefully have it up within the next couple weeks.

  • Like and follow our social media for future spaceflight updates and launch VR experiences!


Disclaimer:

Launch360 is NOT responsible for the development and/or launching of these spacecraft and have no control over launch dates, times, or frequency. Launch dates/times are always subject to change!


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