STATUS: First of all, yes, we skipped the update yesterday. The plan had been to replace the LEOS late Tuesday evening in order to be ready to go Wednesday morning (that is, this morning). The replacement hardware got as far as Tromsø, but the flight from Tromsø to Andenes was canceled due to bad weather. So, instead, the trip is being rerouted via ferry to Andenes and the hardware will arrive in Andenes later this morning. Again, the plan is to be ready to go for the start of the window tomorrow (Thursday) morning.

This has been a tough stretch to say the least, though the efforts on the part of NASA Wallops/Orbital Sciences have been great. Permissions were obtained, paperwork was completed over this past weekend with lightning speed and then everything was handed off to Indiana Jones to be hand-carried here. Very impressive!!

OUTLOOK: As before, the hardware issues force us to be patient, though the solar wind is not cooperating either. The solar wind  magnetic field, density and speed are all very low at this point. On top of this, the weather at the rocket range is also very bad, with rain and winds up to 50+ km/h (35 mph). We are not able to even consider launching with these weather conditions.

Still, the outlook is not bad at all. Our favorite active region on the sun remains quite bright and should move into a good location in about 4 days. The weather forecast for the range should also be improving during this time and we have every reason to think that we will have the hardware issues behind us by then.

Maybe it's obvious that optimism is a job requirement in this field!!

OTHER: In spite of the "down" time, we (the science team) stay very busy with various discussions about what we want for ideal launch conditions, trying to predict activity for the next few days, etc. We also sometimes try to find some time to explore the local area. Visit the photos section of today's update for an example!

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