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New home on pad 39

November 4, 2008 5:54 pm (GMT)
ILS Launch Team

[img]http://www.ilslaunch.com/assets/Images/Media/ASTRA-1M-Blog/pad-arrival.JPG[/img] Yesterday was a long and exciting day here in Baikonur. After receiving the OK last night from the State Commission it was time to send the ILV on its trip to Launch Pad 39. As we learned at the Gagarin Museum, it is a Russian tradition for the locomotive to start its journey at 6:30 a.m. local time. Not wanting to break with tradition, we were all out to see the convoy off at 6:30 a.m. for the 2-1/2 hour journey to its new home on pad 39. At about 9 a. m. everyone who wanted to attend was permitted on the pad deck to watch the incredible sight as the assembled ILV rolled horizontally into position. Then the ILV was hydraulically rotated to its vertical launch position. This process is called the tilting or the erection. Talk about a photo opportunity! The anticipation continues to build as we started to what is referred to as the 7/701 script. This is the official countdown schedule that will bring us to launch day.

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