Delta 2 launches THEMIS probes to study aurora
2/17/07 ~ 6:01pm

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Shortly before sunset, a Delta 2 rocket launches the five THEMIS probes into Earth orbit for NASA
on Feb. 17. THEMIS stands for Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms
and consists of five identical probes that will study the Earth's magnetic field and the aurora. It
was the largest number of NASA satellites ever launched on one mission. Liftoff occured just 14
minutes before sunset, making for a spectacular smoke trail of orange, yellow and white as it
climbed higher into the atmosphere.

THEMIS cleanroom gallery                Personal launch video

<--- GPS 2R-16M                                                     Phoenix Mars Lander --->
A glorious sunset launch as seen from the press site, 1.56 miles northwest of Launch Pad 17B: