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CO2 Satellite: NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 Mission in Photos

Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2

NASA

NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) will study atmospheric carbon dioxide from space. See images and photos from the carbon-hunting mission in this Space.com gallery. In this image, the OCO-2 satellite orbits the Earth in an artist's illustration.

NASA's Global CO2 Surveyor

JPL/NASA

Engineers work on NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory 2, an Earth-orbiting satellite dedicated to tracking the amount of carbon dioxide in the planet's atmosphere.

Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 Glides Across the Room

NASA/Doug Gruben, 30th Space Wing

In the Astrotech payload processing facility on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, Orbital Sciences workers and technicians steady NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2, or OCO-2, as it glides across the room from its transportation trailer toward a test fixture. Photo released May 15, 2014.

Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 Secured Onto Test Fixture

NASA/Doug Gruben, 30th Space Wing

In the Astrotech payload processing facility on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2, or OCO-2, is secured onto a test fixture. Image released May 1, 2014.

The Mobile Service Tower Rolls Away

NASA/Randy Beaudoin

At Space Launch Complex 2 on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the mobile service tower rolls away from the launch stand supporting the Delta II first stage. Operations are underway to mate the rocket's first and second stages. OCO-2 is scheduled to launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket in July. Image released April 15, 2014.

Delta II Second Stage Mating

NASA/Randy Beaudoin

At Space Launch Complex 2 on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, preparations are underway to mate the Delta II second stage for NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 mission, or OCO-2, to the first stage of the rocket, already in place on the launch stand. Image released April 15, 2014.

Delta II Second Stage for OCO-2

NASA/Randy Beaudoin

The Delta II second stage for NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 mission, or OCO-2, is lifted into the mobile service tower at Space Launch Complex 2 on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Image released April 15, 2014.

Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base

NASA/Kim Shiflett

The natural terrain on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California provides a stark contrast to the steel launch tower on Space Launch Complex 2 where preparations are underway for the upcoming launch of NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 mission, or OCO-2, aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket in July. Photo released April 4, 2014.

Artist's Rendition of the OCO-2 Observatory

JPL/NASA

Artist's rendition of NASA's OCO-2 satellite in orbit. OCO-2 launched on July 2, 2014 and made its first science measurements a month later, on Aug. 6.

A-Train Constellation with Details

JPL/NASA

The OCO-2 spacecraft will fly with a series of other Earth orbiting satellites, known as the Earth Observing System Afternoon Constellation or the A-train. These satellites all cross the equator at approximately noontime, a few minutes apart from each other. This artist's depiction of the A-train constellation shows the separation times.

Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 Prepared for Shipment

Orbital Sciences Corp.

Technicians at Orbital Sciences Corp.'s Satellite Manufacturing Facility in Gilbert, Ariz., prepare NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 spacecraft for shipment to its launch site at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base.

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