GOES-T in Florida and ULA Rocket arrive.

After a truck and Super Galaxy plane ride from Colorado to Florida on November 9th, the GOES T Shipping container was opened for inspection at the Astrotech Space Operations in Titusville, Florida. The newest weather satellite was removed and orientated vertically and set up on the stand for more tests, inspections, and later fueling and mounting in the rocket aeroshell.

Meanwhile, The Atlas V booster stage and Centaur upper stage left the ULA manufacturing facility in Decatur, Ala., on Nov. 7 inside the custom-built rocket transportation vessel the R/S RocketShip. The ship reached Port Canaveral on November 15th. (More info on the Rocket Ship)

The United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V booster and Centaur upper stage was offloaded from R/S RocketShip and hauled to the Atlas Spaceflight Operations Center (ASOC) for the NASA/NOA GOES-T mission. The mission will launch from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Fla.

Centaur emerged from the ship first, followed by the Atlas booster stage. Both stages were taken to the high bay at ULA’s Atlas Spaceflight Operations Center (ASOC) facility.

The Atlas V 541 rocket, designated as AV-095, will launch the third in the latest series of advanced weather satellites for NASA and NOAA. The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES)-T will be renamed GOES-18 once it reaches geostationary orbit more than 22,000 miles above Earth. The new satellite will serve as GOES-West and work in tandem with GOES-16, which operates in the GOES-East position.

EDIT 11/18/2021 NOAA and NASA are now targeting March 1, 2022, as the new launch date for NOAA’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite T (GOES-T) mission. The launch was recently scheduled for February 16, 2022. However, shifts in launch dates for missions scheduled ahead of GOES-T prompted NASA, NOAA, and United Launch Alliance (ULA) to coordinate the new date.  

Photo Credits: United Launch Alliance, Astrotech, and Lockheed Martin Space

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