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Delta launches Aura
Posted: Thu, Jul 15, 2004, 8:56 AM ET (1256 GMT)
Aura spacecraft illustration (NASA) A Delta 2 rocket successfully launched NASA's Aura earth sciences spacecraft after several days of delays. The Delta 2 7920 lifted off on schedule at 6:02 am EDT (1002 GMT) Thursday from SLC-2W at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Aura spacecraft separated from the Delta's upper stage 64 minutes after liftoff. Launch attempts the previous two days had been scrubbed because of technical problems: an issue with the spacecraft's data recorder on Tuesday and a power drop in the launch vehicle's second stage battery on Wednesday. Other issues with the spacecraft and launcher had delayed the launch last week. Aura's mission is to study the Earth's atmosphere, looking for evidence of climate change, pollution, and ozone chemistry.
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