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Research range successfully fires rocket

Posted: March 7, 2014 - 1:01am

FAIRBANKS — Scientists working with Poker Flat Research Range have successfully launched a NASA sounding rocket.

The University of Alaska Fairbanks says the rocket blasted off at 2:09 a.m. Monday and reached 200 miles above the village of Venetie (VEE’-neh-teye).

The rocket flew through an aurora and measured electrical particles and electrical fields changed by the aurora.

Lead scientist Marilia Samara of the San Antonio, Texas-based Southwest Research Institute says the rocket took four minutes to reach a spot above the aurora.

The launch had previously been thwarted by wind and other adverse conditions during a window from Jan. 25 to Feb. 9.

The launch was the last scheduled this spring at Poker Flat.

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