NASA Building New Wallops Island Mission Launch Command Center
[Via Satellite 08-28-2015] NASA has awarded a $5.6 million contract to Harkins Contracting of Salisbury, Md., for the construction of a new Mission Launch Command Center (MLCC) at the agency’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Va. The new 14,174 square-foot facility will serve as the hub for interfacing with and controlling rockets, their payloads and associated launch pad support systems during flight operations at Wallops.
The launch command center currently in use was designed in the 1950s, and supported Project Mercury tests and suborbital rocket flights. More recently, the MLCC has supported commercial cargo resupply flights to the International Space Station (ISS), Department of Defense (DOD) missions, and NASA’s first lunar mission to launch from Wallops, the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft.
“The Wallops launch range mission set has seen steady growth, transformation and diversification over the years,” said Bill Wrobel, director of the Wallops Flight Facility. “This new MLCC is a critical modernization project that will meet the needs of our operations today and take us well into the future.”
“The current command center has served us well over the years, but doesn’t have the capacity to meet the needs and requirements for advancing our nation’s goals and objectives in space,” he added.