Mission Status

March 2015

The GPM Core Observatory successfully launched from Tanegashima Space Center, Japan, on February 27th, 2014 at 1:37pm EST. It is currently in orbit, and data from the mission is available for the public to download from a variety of sources and formats which are outlined on the PMM Data Access page.

Mission Updates

The GPS system has been switched on. This tells the satellite the time and its location with respect to the Earth's surface. The team is readying the spacecraft to use its High Gain Antenna for high data-rate communication through the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System. 
The GPM spacecraft is power positive, stable on the sun line and communicating with the GPM Mission Operations Center (MOC) at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. The GPM flight control teams at NASA Goddard are studying a situation with the spacecraft where the satellite is gaining a small amount of rotational momentum. In a normal state, there are environmental forces on the spacecraft that are corrected by the momentum wheels and magnetic torquer bars. At...
The Global Precipitation Measurement Core Observatory is continuing to move successfully toward launch. Programs have been run on the guidance and control system on the H-IIA launch vehicle to confirm that all devices for flight attitude control are working as expected. The one-hour launch window for the GPM Core Observatory opens at Feb. 27 at 1:37 p.m. EST (Feb. 28 at 3:37 a.m. JST).
We have spacecraft separation! The GPM Core Observatory is flying on its own in orbit. The bolts holding it to the second stage successfully severed and the second stage has separated. The GPM spacecraft is flying on battery power until its two solar arrays deploy shortly.
The liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen tanks of the H-IIA launch vehicle first and second stages have been fully loaded. Checks of the radio frequency system between the H-IIA and ground stations have been completed.
Solar array deployment begins. GPM has two arrays to power the spacecraft because of its orbit. It circles the Earth at an angle slanted 65 degrees up from the equator. This means it does not cross the equator at the same time every day – an advantage for monitoring rainfall at different times of day and night.
A second scheduled test of the guidance and control system on the H-IIA launch vehicle has been completed to confirm that all devices for flight attitude control are working as expected. NASA Television has begun coverage of the GPM Core Observatory launch originating from Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. Watch online at: http://www.nasa.gov/nasatv
The GPM Core Observatory has successfully deployed its solar arrays and is stable and pointed at the sun. GPM’s solar arrays are pointed at the sun and collecting power. We have confirmation that the arrays are rotating properly, charging the batteries and providing power to the spacecraft.
The launch of the GPM Core Observatory is proceeding toward launch at Tanegashima Space Center, Japan. Final checks have been made for the operational conditions of the H-IIA launch vehicle, satellites, launch facilities, tracking and control systems, and weather conditions. The process of loading propellant, such as liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, into the rocket has begun. Terminal countdown operations also begun. Access to the launch pad is now restricted within a radius of 400 meters.
Thu, 2014-02-27 12:40 p.m. EST. The green light has been given to the X-60 minutes countdown operation for launch of the NASA-JAXA GPM Core Observatory from Tanegashima Space Center, Japan. Launch is scheduled for 3:37 a.m. JST (Feb. 27 at 1:37 p.m. EST).