FL - Americal Satellite Launch Delayed Again, Electrical Problems Cited

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Title: American Satellite Launch Delayed Again

Story Filed: Sunday, April 23, 2000 10:33 AM EST

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - The launch of a navigation satellite on a Delta 2 rocket was delayed for a second night running, the U.S. Air Force said on Saturday.

Concerns about the satellite's electricity-generating solar panels prompted the latest postponement, officials said.

A new launch date has not been set.

``The decision to delay the launch was made to ensure the spacecraft is absolutely prepared for launch,'' said Lt. Col. Blaise Kordell, the Air Force launch director.

An electrical problem in ground equipment at the Florida spaceport was blamed for halting a launch attempt on Friday.

The Boeing-built rocket is to loft a $42 million Global Positioning System satellite, built by Lockheed Martin (LMT.N). It will replace an 11-year-old orbiting satellite that recently failed.

The Global Positioning System (GPS) was originally conceived to allow U.S. armed forces to determine their exact position within a few feet. Less accurate civilian receivers are now in common use.

GPS-based navigation systems have found their way into boats, aircraft, cars and even golf carts.

Copyright ) 2000 Reuters Limited. http://library.northernlight.com/HB20000422850000019.html?cb=200&dx=2006&sc=0#doc


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