NASA Postpones Dawn Spacecraft Launch To July 9

The scheduled July 7 launch of NASA’s Dawn spacecraft aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta 2 rocket has been postponed until July 9 at the earliest, NASA announced July 6.

The revised launch window was scheduled for Monday from 3:56 p.m. to 4:25 EDT in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

Dawn is the first planetary spacecraft by Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., which began the project’s design and construction in 2001 and has provided satellites for civil, commercial and military customers worldwide since 1982.

Dawn is planned to visit the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The latest a launch window will be scheduled is July 19. If otherwise the spacecraft’s launch is delayed by weather or another scheduled NASA launch, Dawn will have to wait until September or October, which would add to the mission’s $449 million cost by another $25 million, according to NASA spokesman Dwayne Brown.

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