In Orbital Sciences Corp. Building 1555 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the third stage of the Taurus XL rocket joins the first and second stage on an Assembly Integration Trailer in preparation for moving to Pad 576-E on north Vandenberg later this month.
The Orbital Sciences Taurus XL rocket, targeted to lift off Feb. 23, 2011, from Vandenberg's Space Launch Complex 576-E, will take NASA's Glory satellite into low Earth orbit. Glory is scheduled to collect data on the properties of aerosols and black carbon. It also will help scientists understand how the sun's irradiance affects Earth's climate. Photo credit: NASA/Randy Beaudoin