HAMPTON, Va., Oct. 26, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA Langley's latest Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES), an instrument that has studied the Earth's climate for nearly 30 years, is scheduled to launch at 5:48 a.m. Friday, Oct. 28, aboard the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project (NPP) satellite from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
Local media are invited to watch the satellite launch with NASA Langley Research Center employees here in the NACA Room, located in the Center's cafeteria. NASA Langley's News Media Office will issue an updated Media Advisory if this schedule changes.
Media representatives interested in attending should contact Chris Rink at (757) 864-6786 or (757) 344-7711, and need to be at NASA Langley's main gate no later than 5:15 a.m.
CERES collects data about Earth's "radiation budget," or the difference between the incoming energy from the Sun and outgoing energy back to space that determines Earth's temperature and climate. This balance is controlled by both natural and human-induced changes, giving scientists a wide range of questions to study.
The first CERES instrument launched in 1997. Before then, beginning in 1984, the job was done by the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE).
The NPP will collect critical data on long-term climate change and short-term weather conditions. With NPP, NASA continues gathering key data records initiated by the agency's Earth Observing System satellites, monitoring changes in the atmosphere, oceans, vegetation, ice and solid Earth.
The NPP satellite will lift off aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket.
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