At Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the first stage of a United Launch Alliance Delta II that will carry the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project (NPP) satellite into space has arrived at NASA's Launch Complex-2. The vehicle will undergo initial testing at the United Launch Alliance Delta Mission Checkout Facility.
NPP will be positioned 512 miles above the Earth's surface and will orbit about 16 times each day to observe nearly the entire globe. The NPP mission for NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is to measure Earth's atmospheric and sea surface temperatures, humidity sounding, land and ocean biological activity, and cloud and aerosol properties. For more information, visit www.nasa.gov/NPP. Photo credit: NASA/VAFB