NASA delay's launch of satellite to study climate
The US space agency NASA on Wednesday said its Glory climate mission launch has been delayed due to a technical issue and would attempt to launch again on Thursday morning, DPA reported.
The satellite is designed to provide scientists with a more detailed look at Earth's atmosphere to better understand climate change. It had been due to launch aboard a Taurus XL rocket from Vanderberg Air Force Base in California at 2:09 am (1009 GMT).
"Looks like we have to scrub. No launch tonight. Problem with a command circuit. Details to come," NASA said in a Twitter update.
Glory is to orbit Earth at a distance of 817 kilometres.
The mission is to measure tiny particles in the atmosphere known as aerosols, which reflect or absorb light and are considered key to regulating the temperature of the planet.
Glory programme executive Joy Bretthauer said the mission would provide measurements "that are vital to providing planet models and accurately predicting Earth's future climate."
The particles can be both natural and man-made, and range from sources as varied as car exhaust to sea spray, NASA said. Some, such as sea salt, reflect energy from the sun, helping to keep the planet cool, while others such as black carbon particles absorb energy and promote warming.
Scientists believe the particles have actually largely helped reduce warming caused by the effects of greenhouse gases blamed for global warming. But their understanding of the particles is limited.
Glory is outfitted with instruments to measure different types of aerosols and their composition, allowing scientists to create more accurate climate models.