| CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla., July 1
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla., July 1 The launch of an
unmanned Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in
California was called off less than a minute before liftoff on
Tuesday when the pad's water system failed, a live NASA
Television broadcast showed.
The rocket, built and flown by United Launch Alliance, a
partnership of Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co
, was due to lift off at 2:56 a.m. PDT (5:56 a.m. EDT,
0956 GMT) from a launch pad that had not been used in nearly
The pad's water system is needed in case of a fire and to
help suppress potentially damaging acoustic vibrations from
The rocket carries NASA's $465 million Orbiting Carbon
Observatory. Built by Orbital Sciences Corp, it is
designed to measure where carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas tied
to climate change, is moving into and out of the atmosphere.
United Launch Alliance had just 30 seconds to get the rocket
off the launch pad to properly position the OCO satellite at the
front of a train of polar-orbiting spacecraft that passes over
Earth's equator at the same time every afternoon.
"As we only have a 30-second launch window, launch will not
be occurring this morning," said NASA launch commentator George
The launch was tentatively rescheduled for Wednesday, but
engineers first have to track down the cause of the water system
problem, he added.
(Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)