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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — Workers help guide the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft as it is lowered onto the upper stage of a Boeing Delta II rocket for mating. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround these rocky, icy building blocks of the solar system. Launch of CONTOUR aboard the Delta II is scheduled for July 1, 2002, from Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — Workers check the progress of the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft as it is lowered toward the upper stage of a Boeing Delta II rocket for mating. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround these rocky, icy building blocks of the solar system. Launch of CONTOUR aboard the Delta II is scheduled for July 1, 2002, from Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. – Dressed in their SCAPE suits, workers are ready for the fueling of the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft in the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2 (SAEF-2). SCAPE refers to Self-Contained Atmospheric Protective Ensemble. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround them. CONTOUR is scheduled for launch aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket July 1, 2002, from Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — Workers finish donning SCAPE suits for the fueling of the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft in the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2 (SAEF-2). SCAPE refers to Self-Contained Atmospheric Protective Ensemble. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround them. CONTOUR is scheduled for launch aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket July 1, 2002, from Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. – SCAPE suits are ready for worker who will use them during fueling of the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft in the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2 (SAEF-2). SCAPE refers to Self-Contained Atmospheric Protective Ensemble. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround them. CONTOUR is scheduled for launch aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket July 1, 2002, from Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — Near the top, left, of the tower on Launch Complex 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, is seen the second half of the fairing that will encapsulate the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft on a Delta II rocket. On the lower right is the rocket. CONTOUR will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. Flying as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets, the spacecraft will take the sharpest pictures yet of a nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround them. Launch of CONTOUR is scheduled for July 1, 2002

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — In the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2, a lighting test is being conducted on the solar panels on the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft. The spacecraft will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. The spacecraft will fly as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets and will take the sharpest pictures yet of the nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround these rocky, icy building blocks of the solar system. Launch of CONTOUR aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket is scheduled for July 1 from Launch Pad 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — In the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2, a lighting test is being conducted on the solar panels on the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft. The spacecraft will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. The spacecraft will fly as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets and will take the sharpest pictures yet of the nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround these rocky, icy building blocks of the solar system. Launch of CONTOUR aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket is scheduled for July 1 from Launch Pad 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. — Workers in the Spacecraft Assembly and Encapsulation Facility 2 lift and move a solar panel toward the Comet Nucleus Tour (CONTOUR) spacecraft (in the background) for installation of the panel. The spacecraft will provide the first detailed look into the heart of a comet — the nucleus. The spacecraft will fly as close as 60 miles (100 kilometers) to at least two comets and will take the sharpest pictures yet of the nucleus while analyzing the gas and dust that surround these rocky, icy building blocks of the solar system. Launch of CONTOUR aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket is scheduled for July 1 from Launch Pad 17-A, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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At Pad 17A, Cape Canaveral Air Station, a fourth and final solid rocket booster (SRB) (right) is moved from the mobile tower by a crane before mating with the Delta II rocket (left). The rocket will be aided by four SRBs to carry the Stardust satellite into space for a close encounter with the comet Wild 2 in January 2004. Using a medium called aerogel, Stardust will capture comet particles flying off the nucleus of the comet, plus collect interstellar dust for later analysis. The collected samples will return to Earth in a Sample Return Capsule to be jettisoned as Stardust swings by Earth in January 2006. Stardust is scheduled to be launched on Feb. 6, 1999