© 2020 Texas Public Radio
Real. Reliable. Texas Public Radio.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Technology & Entrepreneurship

NASA Scrubs San Antonio-Based SwRI Launch Due To Malfunction

Mission engineers prepare the first CYGNSS satellite for radio frequency testing at the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas.

Update 9 PM 12.13.16

According to NASA's CYGNSS Launch Blog, the launch scheduled for Wednesday [12.14.16] has been delayed again due to incorrect flight data parameters. The new launch data will be uploaded Wednesday and the next launch attempt will be scheduled after testing.

UPDATE: 7 AM (12.13.16)

NASA has rescheduled the launch date for the CYGNSS satellites to Wednesday 12.14.16. The launch window opens at 7:20 AM CST.

UPDATE: 8:16 AM (12.12.16)

This morning, NASA aborted the launch of CYGNSS satellites built at San Antonio-based Southwest Research Institute due to a malfunctioning circuit breaker that powers a hydraulic release pump.

The plan had been for a Pegasus XL rocket to drop from a plane called the Orbital ATK. The Rocket would ignite and carry the eight satellites to 39,000 feet. 

Satellites would then detach two at a time beginning their 2-year mission observing hurricane wind speeds from space.

The launch has been rescheduled for Tuesday Morning, pending a resolution to the malfunction.

Posted: 5 AM

NASA is scheduled to launch San Antonio-based Southwest Research Institute's first satellite Monday morning.  The 8-satellite constellation of hurricane monitoring technology called CYGNSS will use GPS waves, that will for the first time, penetrate the heavy rain of storms from space.  The data will revolutionize how we analyze hurricanes.
Executive Director of Space Science and engineering Mike McClelland at Southwest Research says the satellite itself is part of the current revolution in small satellites.
"What you're going to see in the next decade is there's 3,600 satellites scheduled to launch, in the next decade, small satellites. That's almost a 362 percent increase from the last decade, I think it was like 780, so that's huge. We're unique in that we've been in the business but we've always been on the leading edge of technology. That's what we do here at Southwest Research," McClelland says.
NASA is offering a pre-launch program beginning at 4:45 a.m. (CST) on NASA TV, followed by launch coverage and commentary beginning at 5:45 a.m. The launch itself is scheduled for 7:24 a.m.

Live Coverage can also be found at: