Tonight, I witnessed another Minotaur rocket launch. The first time I saw Minotaur rocket launching was back in 2005 as it shot out from Vandenberg Air Force Base during dusk. ( click to see awe-inspiring pictures ).
Tonight’s launch took place at NASA Wallops flight facility and my video clip was shot all the way from Rockville, MD which is approximately 4 hours drive away. Since the launch didn’t take place during dusk, it’s not as dramatic as the 2005 launch.
Full news about the launch (from http://bit.ly/gDp8i)
NASA successfully launched a Minotaur I rocket from the Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore Tuesday night at 7:55 p.m.
It is the fourth launch attempt in nearly two weeks for NASA. Three other attempted launches had to be scrubbed earlier this month because of weather conditions.
NASA says the TacSat-3 launch was the third Minotaur vehicle launched from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport’s launch pad on the southern end of Wallops Island.
The two secondary payloads were NASA’s PharmaSat microsatellite, developed at the Ames Research Center in California, and NASA’s CubeSat Technology Demonstration experiments, which includes three four-inch cubed satellites, developed by universities and industry.
After the launch, firefighters were called to the scene of the rocket launch after a brush fire erupted after the launch, no one was hurt and no buildings were damaged. Earlier in the evening the launch was delayed because of a boat in the area.
Scientists say the rocket will deliver into orbit an 880-pound Air Force TacSet-3 satellite. Its primary cargo is technology intended to deliver battle imagery to U.S. troop commanders with much greater speed and detail.
Military officials say when the satellite is launched, it could be ready for battlefield use in a year or two.
According to the Air Force, this month’s previous three scrubbed launches cost $750,000.