Launch Of Delta II With 'Opportunity' Targeted For June 28

For Release: June 23, 2003

George Diller Kennedy Space Center, Fla. (321) 867-2468

KSC Release No. 49 - 03


Based on completing the work as currently scheduled, launch managers continue to plan toward Saturday, June 28 as the launch date for MER-B with the "Opportunity" Mars Exploration Rover. The launch time is 11:56:16 p.m. EDT with a second time available at 12:37:59 a.m. EDT on June 29.

NASA and Boeing engineers met today to assess the progress of the cork insulation rework on the Delta first stage for MER-B. The effort is proceeding on schedule to remove and replace the lower band of cork. Inspections on the upper band are under way, and it has not been decided what work, if any, will be required.

Pending a successful schedule assessment by NASA and Boeing managers on Tuesday afternoon, a revised Note to Editors will then be issued with updated plans for news media activities and the launch coverage on NASA Television. The prelaunch press conference will not be held on Tuesday, June 24. It is being rescheduled so that it may continue to be held on L-1 day, Friday, June 27 at 1 p.m.

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Ron Baalke
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