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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. - Components of the Mars Exploration Rovers are undergoing testing in the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility. In the foreground is a lander with its three side petals extended. In the background is a cruise stage assembly. The two rovers, MER-1 and MER-2, their aeroshells and landers will undergo a full mission simulation before being integrated. After spin balance testing, each spacecraft will be mated to a solid propellant upper stage booster that will propel the spacecraft out of Earth orbit. Approximately 10 days before launch they will be transported to the launch pad for mating with their respective Boeing Delta II rockets. The rovers will serve as robotic geologists to seek answers about the evolution of Mars, particularly for a history of water. The rovers are identical to each other, but will land at different regions of Mars. Launch of the first rover is scheduled for May 30 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The second will follow June 25.
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