NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Kepler Mission space telescope launch. Animation of the second stage of the launch of NASA's Kepler telescope into space. After lift-off, protective fairings are jettisoned. The second stage fires causing the craft to spin, in order to stabilize the firing of the third stage. Here, the second stage is jettisoned and the third stage is fired, to provide Kepler with sufficient energy to go into orbit around the Sun. The Kepler Mission is designed to discover Earth-like planets orbiting other stars with its 0.95-metre diameter photometer. The mission was launched from Cape Canaveral, USA, on March 7th 2009, and has discovered numerous exoplanets and stellar systems. K005 2334, K005 2335, K005 2330 and K005 2346 for other stages of the launch).
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