Mission Scientist brief reporters on NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) mission, scheduled to launch at 7:27 p.m. PDT (10:27 p.m. EDT) Thursday, June 27.
IRIS is a NASA Small Explorer Mission to observe how solar material moves, gathers energy and heats up as it travels through a little-understood region in the sun's lower atmosphere. This interface region between the sun's photosphere and corona powers its dynamic million-degree atmosphere and drives the solar wind.
IRIS is targeted to launch in the middle of a five-minute launch window on Thursday. The drop of the air-launched Pegasus from Orbital's L-1011 carrier aircraft will occur over the Pacific Ocean at an altitude of 39,000 feet, about 100 miles northwest of Vandenberg off the central coast of California, south of Big Sur.
Live NASA Television coverage of the launch begins at 6 p.m. PDT (9 p.m. EDT).
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