View Full Version : Discussion: CONTOUR Comet Mission Launches

2003-Jul-20, 09:50 AM
SUMMARY: NASA's Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft launched successfully on board a Boeing Delta II rocket this week. Designed by the John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, the 970 kilogram spacecraft was placed into an elliptical orbit 63 minutes after launch. CONTOUR will orbit Earth until August 15, when it will fire its main engine and begin chasing Comets Encke and Schwassmann-Wachmann 3. If all goes as planned, the spacecraft will get as close as 100km from each comet's nucleus.

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