Sunday, August 23, 2009

Weather Outlook for Discovery Launch Improves

While technicians here at the Kennedy Space Center continue to prepare the space shuttle Discovery for lift-off on Tuesday, the weather outlook at launch time has improved along the Space Coast.

The current weather forecast from the Air Force Spaceflight Meteorology Group improved slightly since last evening with the weather at the time of Discovery's launch now 80% favorable with only light clouds in the area.

Discovery (above, at 8:42 am ET Today) stands ready and technicians are not working any issues as the launch team moves toward a Moonless night launch at 1:36:05 am EDT on Tuesday.

The countdown clocks are currently holding at T-19 hours, and will resume counting again at 12 noon EDT. There are several standard built-in holds in every launch countdown, and act as windows of time to catch up on delayed work or a troublesome issue.

Later this afternoon, crews at the pad will perform main engine prep work, and focus late today on work associated in preparing the rotating service structure to be moved back into the launch position. RSS rollback is planned for 5AM tomorrow morning and will be complete prior to Sunrise. will begin our LIVE launch coverage beginning at 4PM EDT tomorrow afternoon. Please follow us via Twitter (@spacelaunchnews) for live countdown updates to your cell phone or PDA device.

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