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Launch FAQ


Tribute Flight Information for Celestis Guests
Scheduled Launch Date: November 6, 2015
Launch Window opens at 8:00 am MST (10:00 am EST, 3:00 pm GMT)
This webpage last updated November 5, 2015
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We Have Liftoff!

Launch occurred at 8:01 am MST (10:01 am EST, 3:01 pm GMT) today, November 6, 2015!

Welcome all who are attending the events of the Celestis Tribute Memorial Spaceflight. We are pleased that you are traveling to New Mexico to be a part of this mission.

Liftoff Spaceport AmericaHere you will find details regarding all of the events and activities sponsored by Celestis, Inc. as well as information you will need to navigate to and from the various venues and locations we are using. Please review all of the information carefully – your launch experience will be optimal if you do.

Celestis launch headquarters will be at the Elephant Butte Inn in Elephant Butte, New Mexico. All of our launch-related activities will begin, or occur, at the Inn

Important Notes:

  • We will provide live launch updates via Facebook and Twitter (@celestisflights) beginning at 6:00 am MST (8:00 am EST, 1:00 pm GMT) on Friday, November 6.
  • As private vehicles are not allowed at Spaceport America, Celestis has made arrangements for van transport between our launch headquarters at the Elephant Butte Inn and Spaceport America for the tour and launch viewing: You must have a ticket to board the van. Tickets are $100.00 per person. You may purchase your van tickets by calling our offices at 1-281-971-4019.Note that if you are a "Preferred Client" you are entitled to four, complimentary van tickets.
  • If you have not already done so, please e-mail ASAP the memorial spaceflight documentation and the flight message for your loved one.

Activities Schedule

Note that "L-2" means "Two days before launch," "L-1" means "The day before launch," and "L-0" means "Launch Day."
November 4 (L-2) ARRIVAL
6:00 pm to 7:00 pm Registration - Elephant Butte Inn
2:00 pm Board Celestis van at Elephant Butte Inn
2:30 pm Tour of mission control and viewing of the rocket
4:30 pm Return to Elephant Butte Inn
November 6 (L-0) LAUNCH DAY*
5:15 am Board Celestis van at Elephant Butte Inn
5:30 am Celestis van departs promptly for Spaceport America
8:00 am Launch Window (when the launch may occur) opens
TBD Return to Elephant Butte Inn

* NOTE: Launch can be delayed, even at the last second, due to technical or weather-related reasons.

Transportation Tips – No private vehicles are allowed at Spaceport America: You will need to board our van for the launch pad tour November 5 and the launch November 6. You will need your own personal vehicle for all other transportation needs, such as travel to and from the airport, other travel around Elephant Butte, sightseeing, etc. Be advised that there are US Immigration and Naturalization Service checkpoints on the major roads and sometimes traffic can back up.

Regarding airline tickets ... While all indications look good for a November 6 launch, for a variety of reasons launches can always be postponed. So we recommend you book open-ended, flexible, refundable airline tickets. In the highly unlikely event that the launch is scrubbed (cancelled) on Nov. 6, then the launch will be rescheduled for another day. We do not yet know what the backup launch day is. We will post that information as soon as possible.

Registration – All Celests Tribute Flight events require a company issued participant’s badge for entry. Your badge(s), van ticket(s) and the Celestis information package for your group will be issued at registration only to the person who purchases the van tickets. Please note that only the purchaser may pick up these items: Other members of your party may not pick up badges, tickets or your group's information package. At registration, any unpaid transportation fees must be remitted before a badge may be issued. Please retain and display this badge for all activities. Registration will be at the Elephant Butte Inn according to the above schedule.

Items to bring to Spaceport America – Water, sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat, closed-toe shoes with socks (NO SANDALS of any type), and pants (NO SHORTS). As we will arrive at Spaceport America before sunrise on launch morning, we recommend you bring a flashlight. There will be minimal facilities onsite. Note that the restaurant at the Elephant Butte Inn will not be open when we depart for the Spaceport on launch day. Cameras and video cameras are allowed at Spaceport America, however cell phone use on site will be reserved for critical launch operations staff only, due to low cell network capacity in the area.

Please remember that we are guests of Spaceport America and pay attention to instructions provided by local police and state officials. Please do not litter or otherwise disturb the natural area.

Family members who wish not to speak to the media or who might otherwise wish to have a more secluded experience should identify themselves at registration to Celestis staff. We will do our best to honor your wishes.

Information for Citizens of Other Countries -- If you are not a US citizen, you are advised to carry your passport with you at all times. You may be asked to present your passport at the entrance to Spaceport America, and at US Immigration and Naturalization Service checkpoints.

Contact Us
For assistance please call us at: +1.281.971.4019
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