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  • Jennifer Bencar

    Best Space Pictures of the Week - Sept. 29, 2012 | Space Images |

  • John Summerhayes

    Nighttime Space Shuttle Launch. Sad I never got to see one...

  • Elizabe Leeuwner

    Space Shuttle Night Launch. Explanation: This graceful arc traces an Atlas V rocket climbing through Thursday's early morning skies overCape Canaveral Air Force Station  in Florida, USA. Snug inside the rocket's Centaur upper stage were NASA's twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) , now in separate orbits within planet Earth's Van Allen radiation belts. Reflected in the Turn Basin  from a vantage point about 3 miles from Space Launch Complex 41, the scene was captured in a composite of two exposures. One highlights the dramatic play of launch pad lighting, clouds, and sky. A subsequent 3 minute long exposure records the rocket's fiery trail. While most spacecraft try to avoid the radiation belts , named for their discoverer  James Van Allen, RBSP's mission will be to explore their dynamic and harsh conditions.

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