28/10/2011 11:02 BST | Updated 28/12/2011 05:12 GMT

(VIDEO) Watch Nasa's Latest Rocket Take Off

Nasa's latest rocket launch has taken off from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Delta II rocket with an earth-observing satellite onboard lifted off at 5:48 a.m. EDT from Space Launch Complex 2.

The satellite, with the catchy name National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project, or NPP, separated from the Delta II 58 minutes after launch.

NPP will orbit 512 miles above Earth, and will collect weather and climate data, measuring the ozone layer and ice cover.

Lori Garver, NASA Deputy Administrator said: "NPP is critical to our understanding of Earth's processes and changes,"

"Its impact will be global and builds on 40 years of work to understand our complex planet from space. NPP is part of an extremely strong slate of current and future innovative NASA science missions that will help us win the future as we make new discoveries."