ULA set for second attempt at spy satellite launch

ULA set for second attempt at spy satellite launch

ULA set for second attempt at spy satellite launch

The secretive mission will be ULA's 27th for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) - the agency in charge of the USA fleet of spy satellites.

Due to the mission's classified nature, little is known about the NROL-47 payload, but it is believed to be radar reconnaissance satellite, operating from a retrograde orbit inclined 123 degrees.

On Thursday the secretive rocket was delayed for more than an hour - and then yet another hour.

The first launch of the year was a success for United Launch Alliance (ULA) after a week that included several delays due to winds and a mechanism malfunction.

The United Launch Alliance Delta IV rocket lifted off at 2:11 p.m.

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The mission - dubbed NROL-47 - is classified, so we don't know much about the payload and what it'll be used for once in orbit. He also thanked the entire ULA team as well as the mission partners at the NRO and also the U.S. Airforce for making the 27th NRO launch a successful one.

Additionally, Orbital ATK manufactured the propellant tank for the Delta IV upper stage roll control system at the company's Commerce, California, facility, and designed and manufactured the nozzle for the Delta IV's RS-68A engine at its Promontory, Utah, facility.

United Launch Alliance, headquartered in Denver, is a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and the Boeing Co. "Latest weather briefing shows an 80% chance of favorable weather".

With operational launch pads on both coasts-Space Launch Complex-37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., and Space Launch Complex-6 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. -every Delta IV configuration is available to service the requirements of current and future satellite programs.

The launch was delayed twice earlier this week. "This will be the first of two launches scheduled for NRO in 2018".

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