Dec 14, 2009 10:55 AM by NBC
A NASA spacecraft blasted into space early Monday on a mission to map the whole sky in search of hidden asteroids, comets and other celestial objects.
The Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer, or Wise, lifted off aboard a Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base on the central California coast.
The spacecraft will scan the sky for objects that give off infrared light, or heat.
Experts say the craft will produce the most comprehensive map yet of the cosmos.