Technicians begin to remove the protective covering from the lower stack, mini-stack number 1, two of the observatories for NASA's Magnetospheric Multiscale Observatory, or MMS, in Building 1 D high bay at the Astrotech payload processing facility in Titusville, Florida, near Kennedy Space Center.
The MMS upper stack, mini-stack number 2, is scheduled to arrive in about two weeks. MMS is a Solar Terrestrial Probes mission comprising four identically instrumented spacecraft that will use Earth’s magnetosphere as a laboratory to study the microphysics of three fundamental plasma processes: magnetic reconnection, energetic particle acceleration and turbulence. Launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station is targeted for March 12, 2015. To learn more about MMS, visit http://mms.gsfc.nasa.gov. Photo credit: NASA/Dan Casper