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Last Updated: Tuesday February 24 2009 14:36 GMT

Rocket blasts into trouble

A rocket that was blasted into space on a two-year mission to check worldwide carbon dioxide levels failed within minutes of lift-off.

Nasa bosses said part of the rocket covering the Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO) satellite failed to separate properly.

The satellite was meant to be finding out exactly where on the surface of our planet carbon dioxide is being given out and absorbed.

But now it looks like the $270m (186m) mission could be lost.