NASA’s next Mars-bound spacecraft, the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN), is set to launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 401 rocket Monday, Nov. 18.
The two-hour launch window extends from 1:28 p.m. to 3:28 p.m. EST. Liftoff will occur from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 41.
Launch commentary coverage and prelaunch media briefings, will be carried live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.
MAVEN is the second mission under NASA’s Mars Scout Program. It will take critical measurements of the Martian upper atmosphere to help scientists understand climate change over the Red Planet’s history. MAVEN is the first spacecraft devoted to exploring and understanding the Martian upper atmosphere. It will orbit the planet in an elliptical orbit that allows it to pass through and sample the entire upper atmosphere on every orbit. The spacecraft will investigate how the loss of Mars’ atmosphere to space determined the history of water on the surface.
NASA will host a number of pre- and post-launch activities at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Read more…