The spacecraft, piloted and built in Colorado, is out to discover more about the Martian atmosphere.
Swanson took the first Instagram photo in space, a selfie, and says he's slowly getting used to life back on Earth.
The Delta II rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base carrying the Orbiting Carbon Observatory, or OCO-2, satellite on a on a mission to study the Earth's atmosphere. Liftoff was at 2:56 a.m. PT on July 2, 2014.
Colorado astronaut Steve Swanson snaps photos during his third trip to space.
Colorado’s United Launch Alliance, which employs more than 1,700 people in the state, faces the end of its monopoly on Air Force launch contracts after the recent success of the SpaceX Falcon9 rocket.
A Colorado lab is capturing vivid images of Saturn with the Earth in the distant background. They're an update to the famous “Pale Blue Dot” photograph romanticized by Carl Sagan.
Slideshow: Pictures of Saturn captured by the Cassini imaging team, based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, have generated international buzz over the past few weeks. Imaging team leader Carolyn Porco says they're an improvement over the infamous "Pale blue dot" photograph captured by Voyager more than 30 years ago and romanticized by Carl Sagan.