Friday, May 15, 2009

Day 51, 5/15/09 -- Compatibility: Achieved. Rest: Pending.

As expected, the FIREBall launch was scrubbed due to high low-level (~500ft above ground) winds. We arrived at 4AM anticipating this so we could prepare for our compatibility test with the NASA electronics. This would be the first major test of the enormous baffles that we put on earlier -- would they survive, even with these relatively low winds? Stay tuned...

Ok, they survived. At some points the winds started gusting up to almost 20 knots, I believe -- worse than typical launch conditions -- and the baffles, perhaps amazingly, didn't completely fall apart. Some mylar peeled off, but nothing that will be too difficult to fix.

More importantly, our electronics passed the compatibility test! We should be flight-ready in a couple of days -- then, we wait for FIREBall and NCT to launch. The next launch window looks to be Sunday morning.

Last, Amber and Seth arrived from Columbia this morning -- with authentic New York bagels in hand! The ACS and bolometer crews had more work to do today, so Jeff and I filled liquid helium in the cryostat and then left around 11AM. We're going to try and get some rest to recover from the past few days of work.


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