The first ILS launch campaign of 2010 is underway. The Early Team set out on the 6th of January from Virginia to kick off the launch of the Intelsat 16 commercial communications satellite from Baikonur. After a long trip to Moscow, and with an early flight to Baikonur scheduled for the next morning, we all called it an early night. After breakfast, a drive through unusually deserted Moscow streets (it was the day after Russian Orthodox Christmas), and a very uneventful charter flight on a Tupolev Tu-134, the Early Team arrived safe and sound at Yubileiny Airfield on the Baikonur Cosmodrome. Then it was a 45 minute bus ride to the hotel (our home away from home for the next month), the mandatory Safety and Security Arrival briefing, dinner, and another early night for many of the team members. The next few days consisted of office setup and facility acceptance checks as we prepared for the arrival of the Intelsat 16 spacecraft.

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