Tuesday, January 17 , 2017, 12:22 am | Fair 45º

 
 
 
 

Local News

Atlas V Rocket Lifts Off from Vandenberg AFB

Mission includes a top-secret satellite as well as 11 smaller research payloads

An Atlas V rocket carrying a secret payload soars skyward Thursday afternoon, just before its first stage was jettisoned. (Anthony Galván III photo)
An Atlas V rocket carrying a secret payload soars skyward Thursday afternoon, just before its first stage was jettisoned. (Anthony Galván III photo)

Hurtling into the skies at speeds topping 800 mph, an Atlas V rocket carrying a top-secret payload lifted off Thursday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, despite delays that kept the mission grounded for more than a month.

The 200-foot rocket was partially enshrouded by fog as it roared of the launch pad at 2:39 p.m.

The rocket didn’t liftoff as scheduled on Aug. 2 because of instrumentation issues, but by Thursday, those problems had been addresses, according to officials from the United Launch Alliance, a joint venture owned by Lockheed Martin and the Boeing Company to provide launch services for the U.S. government, NASA, the military and other organizations.

The spacecraft was sent into orbit for the National Reconnaissance Office, which monitors national security issues via satellite.

The rocket also held 11 smaller payloads that will study space weather and communications, space environment, debris mitigation, maritime shipping container tracking and spaceflight safety and orbit refinement,.

These smaller payloads were developed by the Space and Missile Command, the Aerospace Corp., USC, the University of Colorado, Cal Poly, Morehead State University, UC Berkeley and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the ULA said.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.



Reader Comments

Noozhawk encourages free expression, regardless of viewpoint, but requires that such expressions be civil in tone, respectful of other commenters and relevant to the stories on which they are posted. We reserve the right to remove any comment for any reason.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree not to submit a comment that is abusive, defamatory, disrespectful, illegal, libelous, profane, vulgar or disparaging (whether on the basis of disability, ethnicity, gender, nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, traits with which people are born, or otherwise).

» Agree not to submit a comment that attacks or threatens another person, threatens or promotes violence, wishes for harm to befall another person, invades another person's privacy or proprietary rights, or uses expletives (including veiled profanity).

» Agree not to stalk or harass another person, dominate the conversation, discourage participation by others, or bait, belittle, bicker with, mock or taunt others.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

» Comments with spam or self-promotional links are not allowed. Comments that include links are automatically routed to a Pending queue. Regularly checking it is not a priority of ours.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >