The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) canceled the launch of a Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket due to the cloudiness of the skies. The much-awaited take-off was supposed to occur at the Wallops Flight Facility last Monday night, June 12.
It can be recalled that the space agency had attempted numerous times to initiate the project. However, due to unavoidable circumstances, NASA scrubbed the previously planned attempts.
The aim of the said launch is to create colorful clouds which will depict artificial auroras in the skies. Once the sounding rocket takes off, it will create red and blue-green clouds which will be visible on the East Coast. With that said, scientists will be able to study the ionosphere and the auroras.
According to reports, the rocket will carry 10 canisters containing chemicals, approximately the size of a soda can, which will be deployed between four to five and a half minutes after the launch. Apparently, the reaction of the chemical with the atmosphere will create the artificial auroras, which many enthusiasts have been anticipating.
Meanwhile, it was revealed that scientists would be able to study the movement of the air in the skies through color tracers. The color tracers are formed by mixing non-hazardous chemicals such as cupric oxide, barium, and strontium.
Although there were chemicals involved, the agency has assured the public that it will not impose danger to the residents near the site of the study.
The success of NASA’s impending Wallops rocket launch depends on the clarity of the skies. Apparently, the artificially colored clouds would be more visible to the scientists conducting the study from their observation sites if the skies are clear. Thus, having cloudy skies forced the team to cancel the launch once again. Monday’s launch marks the seventh time that NASA canceled the takeoff.
“The launch of a Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket scheduled for June 12 from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility has been postponed due to clouds impacting the ability to test a new ampoule ejection system designed to support studies of the ionosphere and aurora.”
Despite the sudden cancellation, NASA already expressed that they will try to pick up where they left off and attempt to launch the Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket no earlier than Thursday night (June 15). The liftoff from Wallops Flight Facility is scheduled between 9:05 p.m. EDT.
[Featured Image by Steve Helber/AP Images]