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ExoLance
Aura launch delayed
Posted: Sat, Jul 10, 2004, 8:45 AM ET (1245 GMT)
Aura spacecraft illustration (NASA) Sunday's scheduled launch of NASA's Aura earth sciences spacecraft has been delayed at least 24 hours because of a problem with the booster's payload fairing. The Delta 2 was scheduled to lift off early Sunday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, but late Friday controllers postponed the launch because an "ordinance separation connector" at the base of the rocket's payload fairing failed to line up properly. At the time controllers delayed the launch 24 hours to give engineers time to study and fix the problem. The launch schedule on the Vandenberg web site now lists a launch date of July 13, which implies a 48-hour delay, although there has been no formal announcement; the official mission web site still listed a July 11 launch date as of Saturday morning. Aura's mission is to study the Earth's atmosphere, looking for evidence of climate change, pollution, and ozone chemistry.
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