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Emily LakdawallaAugust 1, 2007

Phoenix' second stage has been fueled

According to freelance launch photographer Ben Cooper, the second stage of the Delta II rocket that will carry Phoenix into space has been fueled. This was the operation that should have taken place yesterday but could not be done due to foul weather, which resulted in the one-day launch postponement. This was also the step that could not be done for the Dawn mission due to foul weather, which resulted in that mission's launch postponement to September. So Phoenix appears ready to go for its launch very early Saturday morning my time, at 09:26:31 UTC.

On Monday, The Planetary Society announced that we are launching "The First Library for Mars" aboard Phoenix, on a DVD that also carries the names of 250,000 people. This library was originally launched with Mars 96, which failed shortly after launch and landed in the Pacific Ocean off of Chile.

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Emily Lakdawalla

Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist for The Planetary Society
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