Spaceflight Now

Launch weather forecast
Posted: September 7, 2006

 Forecast for Friday, September 8

Issued: Thursday, September 7
Launch Weather Officer: Kathy Winters, 45th Weather Squadron

Synoptic Discussion: "Today, the Bermuda high ridge is located over South Florida, and a frontal boundary is north along the Georgia/Florida border. West-southwest flow is prevalent over Central Florida, and afternoon thunderstorms will develop in Central Florida and migrate toward the east coast. The launch time Friday occurs before thunderstorms will affect Kennedy Space Center (KSC), but there is potential the sea breeze will develop near launch time, causing concern for cumulus clouds within 10 nautical miles of complex 39B and isolated showers within 20 nautical miles of the Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF). Also, the west coast of Florida will have a potential for morning thunderstorms, and anvils from storms will advect toward the east coast of Florida.

"Our primary concerns for launch are cumulus clouds within 10 nautical miles of Complex 39B and isolated showers within 20 nautical miles of the SLF, and anvils from thunderstorms along the west coast of Florida.

"For a 24-hour delay, the probability of KSC weather prohibiting launch decreases as the front weakens and high pressure begins to build back into the area."

Clouds: Cumulus Scattered at 3,000 feet and tops at 6,000 feet with 3/8ths sky coverage; Altostratus Scattered at 10,000 feet and tops at 12,000 feet with 2/8ths sky coverage; Cirrus Scattered at 25,000 feet and tops at 26,000 feet with 3/8ths sky coverage

Visibility: 7 miles

Launch Pad Winds: Southeasterly from 120 degrees at 8 to 12 knots

Temperature: 84 degrees F

Relative Humidity: 75 percent

Weather in area: None

Probability of Violating Weather Constraints: 30 percent

Concerns: Cumulus clouds within 10 nautical miles of the launch pad; showers within 20 nautical miles of the emergency runway; anvil clouds


 Forecast for 24- and 48-hour delays

Saturday's Probability of Violating Constraints: 20 percent
Concerns: Low cloud ceiling

Sunday's Probability of Violating Constraints: N/A
Concerns: N/A