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ST5 Spacecraft and Launch Preparation


*ST5 Spacecraft and Launch 
03.14.06 -- The Pegasus rocket carrying ST5 is targeted for release from 
its carrier jet at 9:02 a.m. EST on Wednesday, March 15 from the skies 
over Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The nearly five-hour countdown to 
launch is set to start at 4:20 a.m. EST. The chances for a successfull 
launch are excellent with all rocket systems passing their ground tests 
and only a 20-percent chance weather could prohibit the flight.

*ST5 Mission*
NASA's Space Technology 5 (ST5) Project is building and testing three 
smaller satellites called micro-satellites. These micro-sats will test 
and validate new technologies for future science missions. The hope is 
that ST5 will demonstrate the benefits of a group of small low-cost 
spacecraft taking measurements at the same time in different locations. 
Building and testing of all three micro-sats is currently underway and 
scheduled for launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB) on March 11, 
2006. ST5 is scheduled to operate in space for at least 90 days.

ST5's objective is to demonstrate and flight qualify several innovative 
technologies and concepts for application to future space missions.

The ST5 Project is a part of NASA's New Millennium Program, which was 
created to identify, develop, build, and test innovative technologies 
and concepts for use in future missions. Its missions are guided by 
future needs of NASA's Earth and Space Science program.

*Launching NASA's Trio of Experimental Satellites:*
Follow the flight preparations and liftoff of ST5 in the Launch section. 
Inside, meet the people behind the scenes of NASA's Expendable Launch 
Vehicles, learn about the Pegasus rocket, and watch the countdown to T-0 
with the Virtual Launch Control Center.
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