Via Paul Fieseler (Dawn's lead spacecraft system engineer) comes this neat photomosaic of the exhaust trail left behind after Dawn's successful launch this morning. The photos were taken by Hamilton Sundstrand instrument systems engineer Randy Pollock, whose spouse Betina Pavri is the lead payload systems engineer for Dawn at JPL. To some of you it may not be obvious that the enormously bright flare at the lower left is not some kind of explosion, it's just the rising Sun -- Dawn's exhaust trail leading into its namesake dawn. How poetic!
Dawn into the dawn
The exhaust trail left by the launch of the Delta II Heavy rocket bearing Dawn into space arches across the Florida sky into the rising sun.