The MAVEN Mission
Date: November 18
Mission: Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN)
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V
Launch Site: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.
Launch Pad: Space Launch Complex 41
Launch Time: 1:28 p.m. EST
A United Launch Alliance Atlas V lifted off from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida to send the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, spacecraft on its way to study the Red Planet's upper atmosphere. Scientists expect data gathered during the MAVEN mission to help explain how Mars' climate has changed over time due to the loss of atmospheric gases.
It will take MAVEN 10 months to reach Mars orbit, then its one-year research mission will begin.