[FPSPACE] Titan 2 launch delayed 24 hours
Dwayne Allen Day
Fri, 19 Jan 2001 00:57:28 -0500 (EST)
On Fri, 19 Jan 2001, Vojko Kogej wrote:
> Titan 2, scheduled for Saturday morning, was delayed 24 hours because of a
> problem with a cable at its Vandenberg Air Force Base launch pad. Who knows
> more about reasons and about this mission?
You can find more information at:
Basically, they had problems with ground cables somehow connected to the
self-destruct system. My guess is that this is some kind of
communications system. Vandenberg has a lot of moisture and that is
probably the ultimate cause.
The satellite is DMSP satellite Flight 16. DMSP is a low earth orbit
weather satellite. They are basically similar to NOAA Tiros birds--they
have a few different instruments. This satellite is replacing a satellite
launched in 1995. The satellites have a 3 year design lifetime and the
1995 one is therefore past its design life (I don't know why their design
life is so short, but I guess that it's because the sensors degrade fast).
Eventually both the NOAA and military systems are supposed to be merged,
with Europe joining in. I don't know the specifics and wonder why it has
not happened yet, since the decision was made around 1993 or so. But it
is still in the cards.
You can find information on DMSP here:
A detailed overview of the satellite system is here:
A very brief history of the program is here:
A detailed history of the DMSP and its spooky predecessor will be
published in Quest in the next year or so (not by me).