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FALCON 9 LAUNCH SCHEDULED

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Team Vandenberg is scheduled to launch the U.S.-European Jason-3 satellite on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex-4 here Sunday, Jan. 17, at 10:42 a.m. PST.

Col. Shane Clark, 30th Space Wing Vice Commander, will be the Launch Decision Authority.

"Vandenberg is excited to welcome 2016 with this launch," said Clark. "Our mission is to provide unique capabilities for assured access to and from space for our nation. We have worked diligently with our mission partners at NASA and SpaceX to ensure a safe and successful launch."

Jason-3 is an international mission led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) partnering with NASA, CNES (the French Space Agency) and the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites. The mission will continue the ability to monitor and precisely measure global sea surface heights, monitor the intensification of tropical cyclones and support seasonal and coastal forecasts. Jason-3 data will also benefit fisheries management, marine industries and research into human impacts on the world's oceans. The mission is planned to last at least three years, with a goal of five years.

For questions about the booster please contact Emily Shanklin, SpaceX director of marketing communications, at 310-363-6733.

For more information about the Jason-3 launch, visit: http://nesdis.noaa.gov/jason-3/ or call George Diller from NASA at 805-605-3051.