In Pictures: 21 critical future NASA missions

NASA space plans include trips to Mars, Jupiter, Pluto and the Sun as well as climate change operations

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Icy cold: The Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESAT-2) will begin development this year. The satellite is expected to further measure the Earth's ice sheet mass, cloud and aerosol levels as well as land topography and vegetation, NASA said. The current ICESAT mission has amassed over 1.9 billion measurements while in orbit through completion of its 2009 spring campaign, NASA said.

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In Pictures: 21 critical future NASA missions

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