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This image is a view of Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.  The large Atlas V rocket that will carry the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter through Earth's atmosphere sits tall and majestic against a light blue sky blotted with very faint white clouds.  The lower stage of the rocket (closest to the ground) is half copper-colored and half white.  The upper stage, which is roughly half the size of the lower stage, is white and gold.  White smoke billows from the adaptor area where the stages meet as the 'wet dress rehearsal' is conducted.  To the left and right of the rocket sit two large towers that serve as lightning rods to protect the rocket and spacecraft from strikes.
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'Wet Dress Rehearsal' for Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

During a "wet dress rehearsal," the Atlas V rocket that will lift the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter was fired.  Pre-liftoff operations were conducted and the rocket's engine was fueled.

Credit: NASA

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