Press Release

DART Arrives at Vandenberg Space Force Base, Its Final Stop Before Launch

Wed, 10/20/2021 - 14:07

Just two days after leaving the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland, in a specialized container carefully strapped to the deck of a semitrailer truck, NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) spacecraft arrived in California — its final stop here on Earth.

The truck, spacecraft and a small motorcade of APL engineers and technicians pulled into Vandenberg Space Force Base near Lompoc, California, on Saturday, Oct. 2, in the early afternoon local time.

“Although it was just a few days of travel, this has been a journey long coming,” said Elena Adams, DART mission systems engineer from APL. “We are all excited and relieved to see the truck arrive safely at Vandenberg and for DART to begin its final preparations for launch.”

The spacecraft will go through a series of final tests and checks, as well as fueling, in the next few weeks as the team prepares for DART’s scheduled launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in late November.