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First SIRTF Launch Attempt

Rocket and Preparations

These are images from the planned 18 April 2003 launch of Spitzer (then called SIRTF), which was delayed by NASA due to concerns about the Delta-II rocket intended to carry it to orbit. Many of the images in this directory are no longer pertinent (e.g. the rocket and boosters pictured were not used on the actual Spitzer launch). A newer Launch Images Directory exists containing currently relevant imagery. However, this page has been retained for the sake of completeness.

Rocket and Preparations

SIRTF back in the clean room at Kennedy Space Center on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

As pieces of the protective payload canister rest in the foreground, workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida inspect SIRTF after its trip back to the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center in Florida disassemble the payload canister from around SIRTF on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF arrives in the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF arrives in the clean room on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is moved back to its hangar on 02 May 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is lowered onto a truck for its trip back to its hangar on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is lowered onto a truck for its trip back to its hangar on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is lowered off of pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is lowered off of pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is moved off of pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is moved off of pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is moved off of pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF, in its protective payload canister, is removed from the top of a Delta-II rocket on pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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SIRTF, in its protective payload canister, is removed from the top of a Delta-II rocket on pad 17-B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 02 May 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The launch faring is installed around SIRTF on 10 April 2003.

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One last look at SIRTF as its launch faring is installed around it on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF sits inside one half of its launch faring atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF sits inside one half of its launch faring atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF sits inside one half of its launch faring atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF's launch faring is installed around it atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF is moved into position to have its launch faring installed atop its Delta rocket on 10 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF sits atop the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF atop the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is hoisted up the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is hoisted up the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is hoisted up the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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The payload canister containing SIRTF is hoisted up the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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Credit: NASA

The payload canister containing SIRTF is hoisted up the launch tower on 05 April 2003.

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Workers at Cape Canaveral Air Force Base on 05 April 2003 prepare to hoist the payload canister containing SIRTF up the launch tower.

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Workers at Cape Canaveral Air Force Base on 05 April 2003 prepare to hoist the payload canister containing SIRTF up the launch tower.

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Workers at Cape Canaveral Air Force Base on 05 April 2003 prepare to hoist the payload canister containing SIRTF up the launch tower.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 03 April 2003 enclose SIRTF in its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 03 April 2003 enclose SIRTF in its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 03 April 2003 enclose SIRTF in its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 03 April 2003 enclose SIRTF in its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

A shrouded SIRTF on 03 April 2003 awaits the completion of its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

A shrouded SIRTF at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 as workers construct the remainder of its payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct the payload canister, which protects SIRTF on its journey to the launch pad, around the shrouded Observatory.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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A shrouded SIRTF awaits the assembly of its payload canister, in pieces in the foreground, which will protect the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 construct SIRTF's payload canister, which protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Credit: NASA

A shrouded SIRTF at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 as workers prepare to surround it with the payload canister that protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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A shrouded SIRTF at Kennedy Space Center on 02 April 2003 as workers prepare to surround it with the payload canister that protects the Observatory on its journey to the launch pad.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 01 April 2003 install segments of the canister base plate under SIRTF.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 01 April 2003 install segments of the canister base plate under SIRTF.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 01 April 2003 install segments of the canister base plate under SIRTF.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 01 April 2003 install segments of the canister base plate under SIRTF.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 01 April 2003 prepare to install the canister base plate (in segments in the foreground) under SIRTF.

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SIRTF attached to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 29 March 2003 connect SIRTF to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 29 March 2003 prepare to connect SIRTF to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 29 March 2003 prepare to connect SIRTF to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 29 March 2003 prepare to connect SIRTF to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center on 29 March 2003 prepare to connect SIRTF to its payload attach fitting, which will connect the satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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SIRTF in a clean room at Kennedy Space Center prior to being connected to the payload attach fitting, which will connect the SIRTF satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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Workers at Kennedy Space Center prepare the payload attach fitting, which will connect SIRTF to its Delta II launch vehicle, for attachment to the satellite on 29 March 2003.

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SIRTF's payload attach fitting, which will connect the SIRTF satellite to its Delta II launch vehicle.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket is mated with the first stage on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket is moved into position above the first stage on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket as seen prior to being mated with the first stage on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket reaches the top of the gantry on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket is hoisted up on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket is hoisted up on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's Delta rocket is hoisted up on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's rocket begins to be hoisted on 14 March 2003.

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The second stage of SIRTF's rocket arrives at Cape Canaveral on 14 March 2003.

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The Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit as seen on 13 March 2003. Solid rocket boosters have been attached to the first stage, which awaits the arrival of the second stage and SIRTF itself.

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Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Workers prepare a solid rocket booster for attachment to SIRTF's rocket, seen in the background.

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A solid rocket booster is hoisted into position alongside two others, waiting to be mated to the main stage of SIRTF's rocket.

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Solid rocket boosters are hoisted into a gantry to facilitate mating with SIRTF's rocket.

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A solid rocket booster arrives and is prepared for mating with SIRTF's rocket.

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The first stage of SIRTF's rocket, with several solid rocket boosters already attached.

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The protective cover that shrouded SIRTF in transport is removed in a Kennedy Space Center clean room on 06 March 2003.

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SIRTF rotated to a vertical position in a Kennedy Space Center clean room on 06 March 2003.

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SIRTF in a Kennedy Space Center clean room on 06 March 2003, shortly after delivery.

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SIRTF moved into a hangar at Kennedy Space Center on 06 March 2003.

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SIRTF delivered to Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

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Two solid rocket boosters as seen from above as workers prepare to mate them to the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Two solid rocket boosters as seen from above as workers prepare to mate them to the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Credit: NASA

Workers prepare to attach more solid rocket boosters to the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Workers prepare to attach more solid rocket boosters to the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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The Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit is seen here on 07 March 2003, with the first solid rocket boosters already attached but still awaiting the remaining boosters and the second stage.

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Credit: NASA

Two of SIRTF's nine solid rocket boosters being prepared for mating with the Delta rocket.

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Two of SIRTF's nine solid rocket boosters being prepared for mating with the Delta rocket.

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One of SIRTF's nine solid rocket boosters is hoisted for mating with the Delta rocket.

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One of the nine solid rocket boosters is hoisted in preparation for mating with the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit, seen in the background.

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Credit: NASA

One of the nine solid rocket boosters arrives for mating with the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Credit: NASA

The Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit in its gantry on 24 February 2003, awaiting attachment of solid rocket boosters and the second stage that will contain the SIRTF satellite.

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The engine of the first stage of the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit seen here as the rocket is lifted into position on 24 February 2003.

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Credit: NASA

Logos on the side of the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Credit: NASA

The Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit.

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Credit: NASA

The first stage of the Delta rocket that will carry SIRTF to orbit is lifted into position on 24 February 2003.

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Credit: NASA

SIRTF's Rocket.

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Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech



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