MICA rocket launch, part 1…
February 2, 2012 Leave a comment
So as I told you in my last post, I’m travelling to Alaska to launch a NASA sounding rocket from Poker Flat Rocket Range. Well, now I’m safely in Fairbanks, after roughly 23 hours of travel and three flights (Boston to Houston, Houston to Seattle, Seattle to Fairbanks). Flying into Seattle at twilight I got to see the Space Needle which was really cool. Flying into Fairbanks was sort of creepy; all you can see out the window is blackness as far as you can see and except for one little cottage or house lit up. Then all of a sudden we were in Fairbanks, kinda came out of nowhere. The city itself is very wide open and rather un-city-like. There is a very large shopping center with Lowe’s, Home Depot, Wal-Mart, and several grocery stores. Everything is very spread out.
As far as the launch goes, my job has basically been a lot of sitting around. The main parts of the rocket and the payload arrived yesterday afternoon. At that point, all of the rocket folks from Wallops Air Force Base got to work on unpacking and prepping things; that’s also when I and the experimenters from Dartmouth left. Today is more of the same for me, sitting around waiting. Our instrument, the ERPA, is already on the rocket, so I just need to wait until they’re all set putting stuff together. Yippee.