Lompoc, California is the place to be for the much anticipated NASA launch of the InSight on its Mission to Mars. The launch is slated for May 5 at 4 am* from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Space Launch Complex-3 on an Atlas V-401. This will be the first planetary spacecraft to launch from this west coast launch facility.
“We are looking forward to supporting the first interplanetary launch from Vandenberg this May,” said Col. Michael Hough, 30th Space Wing Commander. “The InSight Mission to Mars is the first lander to explore the interior and subsurface of that planet and we are working with the entire team of NASA, ULA and JPL to ensure this launch is safe and successful.”
The official public viewing location for the launch is at Lompoc Airport, 1801 N H Street, Lompoc, starting at 2:30 am. Visitors will be able to see the launch, watch NASA TV commentary from the tarmac, and meet NASA/InSight mission team members and city representatives. Several Lompoc hotels are located less than a mile from Lompoc Airport for fast, pre-dawn access to the public viewing location. A second public viewing location is at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 2800 Harris Grade Road, Lompoc, where visitors are welcome to see the launch from the church parking lot, and interact with NASA/InSight mission team members in attendance, starting at 3:00 am. For more information visit: http://explorelompoc.com/vandenberg-air-force-base/.