Last update: September 17th, 2019 at 4:46 pm
At the Astrotech Payload Processing Facility on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, an overhead crane lifts the CloudSat spacecraft away from its shipping container. CloudSat was shipped from Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. in Boulder, Colo. It will be placed on the workstand, seen on the floor in the foreground, and will undergo electrical and spacecraft transmitter testing. In combination with the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation (CALIPSO), the spacecraft will provide never-before-seen 3-D perspectives of how clouds and aerosols form, evolve, and affect weather and climate. CALIPSO and CloudSat will fly in formation with three other satellites to enhance understanding of climate systems. The launch date for CloudSat/CALIPSO is no earlier than Aug. 22.