On Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's skid strip in Florida, the crane at left will lift the Centaur stage of the Atlas V rocket below it to place it on the flatbed truck at right. The Centaur arrived at CCAFS aboard the Russian AH-124-100 aircraft. The Centaur will be transported to the Astrotech facility in Titusville, Fla. The Atlas V will launch NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, or LRO, and NASA's Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite, known as LCROSS.
The two spacecraft will be integrated with the Atlas V and tested for final flight worthiness. Launch is scheduled for the spring. LCROSS and LRO are the first missions in NASA's plan to return humans to the moon and begin establishing a lunar outpost by 2020. Photo credit: NASA/Cory Huston