Last Delta II Launch of 2001 to Orbit Two NASA Satellites

A Boeing Delta rocket is poised to thunder into the skies over Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., to launch NASA's Jason-1 and TIMED spacecraft.

The launch, scheduled between 6:58 a.m. and 7:18 a.m. PST on Dec. 7, 2001 from Space Launch Complex 2W, will be the last of seven Boeing Delta launches this year.

"This mission illustrates the continuing Delta legacy," said Joy Bryant, Boeing director of NASA expendable launch programs. "We've come a long way because of our commitment to success.

"We will again demonstrate that commitment to ensure that Jason-1 and TIMED satellites safely reach their proper orbits."

For this mission, the rocket will feature a 10-foot composite fairing and a dual-payload attach fitting for deployment.

Jason-1 is a mission to monitor global ocean circulation, study the link between the oceans and atmosphere, improve global climate predictions, and monitor events such as El Niño. Jason-1 is a joint effort between NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena Calif., and the French Space Agency, CNES.

TIMED, the Thermosphere Ionosphere Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics satellite, will explore the least-understood region of the Earth's atmosphere, the Mesosphere, and Lower Thermosphere/Ionosphere. This mission will help scientists better understand this atmospheric region's effects on a number of areas including communications, satellite tracking, and spacecraft lifetimes.

TIMED is a joint effort between NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center located in Greenbelt, Md. and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md.

This year, Boeing has already successfully launched a Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite for the U.S. Air Force, an advanced technology demonstration satellite called GeoLITE for National Reconnaissance Office, NASA's Mars Odyssey, MAP, and Genesis spacecraft, and the world's most advanced digital imaging satellite, DigitalGlobe's Quickbird.

The Boeing Company is the largest aerospace company in the world and the United States' leading exporter. It is the world's largest NASA contractor and the largest manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft. The company's capabilities in aerospace also include rotorcraft, electronic and defense systems, missiles, rocket engines, launch vehicles, and advanced information and communication systems. The company has an extensive global reach with customers in 145 countries and manufacturing operations throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia.

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