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Launch of Mars lander delayed

world Updated: Aug 01, 2007 10:01 IST
IANS
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The planned launch of the Phoenix Mars lander has been pushed back, according to NASA.

Phoenix is now scheduled to be fired into space from Florida's Kennedy Space Centre aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket on Saturday at either 5.26.34 am or 6.02.59 am.

Poor weather at the space centre kept NASA from fuelling the rocket on Tuesday afternoon and led to the decision to delay the launch.

The lander is the first in a series of crafts to further explore the availability and chemical make-up of water on Mars.

The Mars lander is due to launch just days before the Space Shuttle Endeavour is to leave for the International Space Station on Aug 7. Though the Phoenix has a flight window only through late Aug, a NASA spokesman told space.com that it was too soon to tell if its delay could push back the shuttle launch.

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