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AF helps Lockheed Martin ship Mars lander

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Staff Sgt. Mike Morris, a loadmaster with the 16th Airlift Squadron from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., secures a cable to the transportation container holding NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander here May 7. The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. 

Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Staff Sgt. Mike Morris, a loadmaster with the 16th Airlift Squadron from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., secures a cable to the transportation container holding NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander here May 7. The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- David Smith, a member from Lockheed Martin?s load crew, lines up a flat-bed trailer holding NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander.
The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. 

Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- David Smith, a member from Lockheed Martin?s load crew, lines up a flat-bed trailer holding NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander. The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Staff Sgt. Mike Morris, a loadmaster with the 16th Airlift Squadron from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., secures support equipment for NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander in a C-17 here May 7. The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Staff Sgt. Mike Morris, a loadmaster with the 16th Airlift Squadron from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., secures support equipment for NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander in a C-17 here May 7. The lander, which was built at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's Waterton Canyon facilities in Littleton, Colo., was loaded on a C-17 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final test and launch preparations. The Phoenix lander is slated for liftoff aboard a Delta II launch vehicle in early August. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Members from Lockheed Martin's load crew help load NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander on a C-17 from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., here May 7 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Lockheed Martin built the Phoenix lander for NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.  The University of Arizona, Tucson, leads the Phoenix mission.  JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, manages the Phoenix Mars Lander for the NASA Science Mission Directorate. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Members from Lockheed Martin's load crew help load NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander on a C-17 from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., here May 7 for transportation to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Lockheed Martin built the Phoenix lander for NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The University of Arizona, Tucson, leads the Phoenix mission. JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, manages the Phoenix Mars Lander for the NASA Science Mission Directorate. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alex Gochnour)

This is an artist rendition of the Phoenix lander. Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (Courtesy graphic)

This is an artist rendition of the Phoenix lander. Phoenix is the first mission of NASA's Mars Scout Program. The spacecraft will land on the icy northern latitudes of Mars. During its approximately 90-day mission, Phoenix will dig trenches with its robotic arm into the frozen layers of water below the surface. The spacecraft will use various on-board instruments to analyze the contents of the ice and soil; all in the hopes of finding organic compounds that are necessary for life. (Courtesy graphic)