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Liftoff! NASA Radiation Belt Storm Probes Launch Photos

NASA's Radiation Belt Storm Probes Launch (Wide View)

NASA TV

A far view of NASA's twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes launch into orbit atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., at 4:05 a.m. EDT on Aug. 30, 2012.

Radiation Belt Storm Probes Launch (Close-Up)

NASA TV

A NASA camera provides this zoom view of the Atlas 5 rocket launching the twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes into orbit on Aug. 30, 2012, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

Radiation Belt Storm Probes Launch (Ascent)

NASA TV

A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket soars toward space carrying NASA's twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes on Aug. 30, 2012, in a successful launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

Radiation Probes Launch: Stage Separation

NASA TV

This United Launch Alliance graphic depicts first stage separation based on telemetry from the Aug. 30, 2012, launch of an Atlas 5 rocket carrying NASA's twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes mission. The mission launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

Radiation Probes Launch: Nose Fairing Sep

NASA TV

The protective nose cone falls away as designed from the Atlas 5 rocket carrying NASA's Radiation Belt Storm Probes in this United Launch Alliance graphic based on live telemetry on Aug. 30, 2012.

Engines Ignite Under Atlas 5

NASA/Rusty Backer

The engines ignite under the United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 4:05 a.m. EDT lifting NASA's Radiation Belt Storm Probes, or RBSP, off Space Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Aug, 30. 2012.

Atlas V Probe Ignites

NASA/Kenny Allen

The engines ignite under the United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 4:05 a.m. EDT on Aug. 30, 2012 lifting NASA's Radiation Belt Storm Probes, or RBSP, off Space Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

United Launch Alliance Atlas V Rocket Carrying RBSP

NASA/Kenny Allen

The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying NASA’s Radiation Belt Storm Probes, or RBSP, is a breath away from lifting off Space Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Aug. 30, 2012.

RBSP Spacecraft Stacked

RB Storm Probes (via Twitter as @RBStormProbes)

NASA's twin RBSP spacecraft were stacked on July 27, 2012, inside the Astrotech payload processing facility in Titusville, FL.

How the Van Allen Radiation Belt Probes Work (Infographic)

Karl Tate/SPACE.com

NASA's Van Allen Belts probes (formerly called the Radiation Storm Belt Probes) mission will study Earth's radiation belts, the Van Allen Belts, like never before. See how they work in this Space.com infographic.

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