Richard Fitzgerald, Radiation Belt Storm Probes, or RBSP, project manager at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory? in Laurel, M.D., participates in a postlaunch news conference at NASA Kennedy Space Center’s Press Site in Florida. The RBSP spacecraft launched atop a United Launch Alliance, or ULA, Atlas V rocket at 4:05 a.m. EDT from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
RBSP will explore changes in Earth's space environment caused by the sun -- known as "space weather" -- that can disable satellites, create power-grid failures and disrupt GPS service. The mission also will provide data on the fundamental radiation and particle acceleration processes throughout the universe. For more information on RBSP, visit http://www.nasa.gov/rbsp. Photo credit: NASA/Jim Grossmann