launch

Tyler Pratt/KCBX

NASA successfully launched a spacecraft to Mars from Vandenberg Air Force base on Saturday. It was the first ever interplanetary launch from the West Coast, and if all goes according to plan, just before Thanksgiving the Insight mission will land on Mars and begin drilling down into the surface. The mission's goal? To learn more about how rocky planets form.

Video still from NASA

UPDATE: Tuesday, July 2, 2014 at 7:36 a.m. 

A NASA satellite that will study Earth's carbon dioxide levels and their relationship to climate change was launched into space early Wednesday morning onboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket at Vandenberg Air Force Base.

The Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) is the second of NASA's five Earth science missions to launch this year. It's the organization's first mission dedicated to studying atmospheric carbon dioxide, the leading human- produced greenhouse gas.

Atlas V launch scheduled at Vandenberg AFB

Mar 24, 2014
NASA Goddard Photo and Video

An Atlas V rocket  is scheduled for a launch pad at Vandenberg Air Force Base on Thursday, April 3. The window for launch opens at 7:46 a.m.

The rocket's payload includes a satellite for the Air Force Defense Meteorological Satellite Program. It was built by Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman. United Launch Alliance builds and flies the rocket.

Col. Keith Balts, 30th Space Wing commander will be in charge of the launch decision.