Rocket Arrives at Cape for NASA’s MAVEN Launch

The Atlas V launch vehicle that will send NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft on its mission this fall arrived at Port Canaveral, Fla., Aug. 26. The Mariner, a unique barge built to accommodate safely large rocket stages, transported the Atlas V’s two stages to Florida following their manufacture at the United Launch Alliance factory in Decatur, Ala. MAVEN is targeted to lift off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 41 on Nov. 18. Following its 10-month voyage, the spacecraft will begin orbiting the Red Planet, where it will be the first mission dedicated to studying Mars’ upper atmosphere. Scientists hope to find traces of the ancient environment thought to have existed there.

Source: NASA Television

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