SpaceX Rocket Is Ready to Launch NASA's Next Planet-Hunting Telescope

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SpaceX’s Valuation Takes Off Once Again

Companies SpaceX’s Valuation Takes Off Once Again

SpaceX, which was awarded "Category 2" certification for the "Full Thrust" Falcon 9 by NASA in January (PDF) despite a notable boom on the way to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2015, has to hit a 30-second launch window, which opens at 22:32 UTC tonight from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral.

NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, or TESS, is making strides towards its future liftoff.

TESS is a NASA Astrophysics Explorer mission led and operated by MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Dr. George Ricker of MIT's Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and also Space Research functions as principal investigator for the goal. Additional partners include Orbital ATK, NASA's Ames Research Center, the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and the Space Telescope Science Institute. NASA's Launch Services Program is responsible for launch management.

The following is a passage from Wikipedia on the TESS satellite.

The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is a planned space telescope for NASA's Explorers program, created to search for exoplanets using the transit method in an area 400 times larger than that covered by the Kepler mission. It is prepared for launch in April 2018.

During its two-year mission TESS will monitor the brightness of more than 200,000 stars, looking for the tell-tale drop in brightness caused by planetary transits (when an orbiting planet passes in front of the star). The TESS project will use an array of wide-field cameras to perform an all-sky survey. With TESS, it will certainly be feasible to examine the mass, dimension, thickness as well as orbit of a big mate of little worlds, consisting of an example of rough globes in the habitable areas of their host celebrities.

No ground-based survey can achieve this feat.

Since stars that will be surveyed by TESS will be closer and brighter than those surveyed by Kepler, the planets should be easier to characterise. TESS will record the nearest and brightest main sequence stars hosting transiting exoplanets, which are the most favorable targets for detailed investigations. On April 5, 2013, it was revealed that TESS, together with the Neutron Celebrity Inside Structure Traveler (NICER), had actually been chosen for launch.

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