Countdown Nears: Final Tests
The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft performed an integrated system test with its Atlas V rocket on Monday, August 1, 2005, in the Atlas Vertical Integration Facility. This test confirmed the team's ability to communicate with the orbiter atop the rocket. Preparations are underway for a final simulated countdown on Thursday, August, 4, 2005.

Pictured is the encapsulated Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter inside the Vertical Integration Facility on Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Credit: NASA

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