In the clean room at KSC’s Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility, the media (also dressed in clean room suits) learn about NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft (at left) from New Horizons Mission Systems Engineer David Kusnierkiewicz, in the center. Behind Kusnierkiewicz is one half of the fairing that will enclose the spacecraft for launch, scheduled for January 2006. The media event brought photographers and reporters to the site to talk with project management and test team members from NASA and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. Carrying seven scientific instruments, the compact 1,060-pound New Horizons probe will characterize the global geology and geomorphology of Pluto and its moon Charon, map their surface compositions and temperatures, and examine Pluto's complex atmosphere. After that, flybys of Kuiper Belt objects from even farther in the solar system may be undertaken in an extended mission. New Horizons is the first mission in NASA's New Frontiers program of medium-class planetary missions. The spacecraft, designed for NASA by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md., will fly by Pluto and Charon as early as summer 2015.