Europe's launch of space telescope called off at last minute

The CHaracterising ExOPlanet Satellite, Cheops, in at ESA's technical centre in the Netherlands in September 2018.

(CNN)Europe's space agency was planning to send a new telescope to study far-off planets into space Tuesday but the launch was called off at the last minute.

A spokesperson for the European Space Agency (ESA) said the launch would not go ahead today because of a problem with the launch device.
Artist impression of Cheops, the Characterising Exoplanet Satellite, with an exoplanet system in the background.
Called CHEOPS (CHaracterising ExOPlanet Satellite), the telescope was due to be launched aboard a Soyuz-Fregat rocket from Europe's spaceport in Kourou in French Guiana early Tuesday. The launch had been due to be livestreamed on the ESA's website.
    During final countdown operations, the Soyuz launcher's automated sequence was interrupted at 1 hour 25 minutes before liftoff, Arianespace, the satellite company operating the launch, said in a statement. The new launch date will be announced as soon as possible, it added.
    The telescope's mission is to observe individual stars already known to host exoplanets -- planets outside our solar system -- focusing on planets sized in the Earth to Neptune range. To date, 4,143 planets have been discovered around stars other than the sun, ESA said.