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November 13, 2012
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — At the Astrotech payload processing facility, workers guide the movement of the upper canister being lifted from the Dawn spacecraft, seen encased in a protective cover. Dawn was returned from Launch Pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station to Astrotech to await a new launch date. The launch opportunity extends from Sept. 7 to Oct. 15. Dawn is the ninth mission in NASA's Discovery Program. The spacecraft will be the first to orbit two planetary bodies, asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres, during a single mission. Vesta and Ceres lie in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. It is also NASA’s first purely scientific mission powered by three solar electric ion propulsion engines. NASA/Charisse Nahser

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