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November 13, 2012
(07/01/2007) --- KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. -- On Launch Pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, the first half of the fairing is lifted into the mobile service tower for encapsulation around NASA's Dawn spacecraft. The fairing is a molded structure that fits flush with the outside surface of the Delta II upper stage booster and forms an aerodynamically smooth nose cone, protecting the spacecraft during launch and ascent. Dawn's goal is to characterize the conditions and processes of the solar system's earliest epoch 4.5 billion years ago by investigating in detail two of the largest asteroids, Ceres and Vesta. They reside between Mars and Jupiter in the asteroid belt. Launch is scheduled for July 8. Photo credit: NASA/Amanda Diller

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