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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 5:20 EDT

United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches Missile Defense Mission

May 5, 2009

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., May 5 /PRNewswire/ — A United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket, on behalf of the NASA Launch Services Program, successfully launched the Space Tracking and Surveillance System (STSS) Advanced Technology Risk Reduction (ATRR) mission for the United States Missile Defense Agency at 1:24 p.m. PDT, today. The Missile Defense Agency’s STSS Advanced Technology Risk Reduction satellite serves as a technology pathfinder for the STSS mission – a space-based sensor component of the layered Ballistic Missile Defense System.

“Congratulations to our Missile Defense Agency and NASA customers for a tremendous start to this critically important national defense mission,” said Jim Sponnick, ULA vice president, Delta Product Line. “Today’s STSS ATRR launch represents another important chapter in the Delta II’s successful history of supporting both DOD and NASA missions. ULA looks forward to launching the STSS Demo mission aboard another Delta II launch vehicle from the east coast later this year.”

Blasting off from Space Launch Complex 2, the ULA Delta II 7920-10c configuration vehicle featured a ULA first stage booster powered by a Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-27A main engine and nine Alliant Techsystems strap-on solid rocket boosters. An Aerojet AJ10-118K engine powered the second stage. The payload was encased by a 10-foot-diameter composite payload fairing. ULA technicians, engineers, and management worked for more than two years to prepare the vehicle for the STSS ATRR mission.

ULA’s next launch is the NASA Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission set to launch June 2 aboard a ULA Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida.

Formed in 2006, ULA combines the successful Atlas and Delta expendable launch vehicle programs offering cost-effective and reliable launch services to U.S. government customers, including the Department of Defense, NASA, the National Reconnaissance Office and other commercial organizations.

ULA program management, engineering, test and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver, Colo. Manufacturing, assembly and integration operations are located at Decatur, Ala., Harlingen, Texas and San Diego, Calif. Launch operations are located at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., and Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

For more information on the ULA joint venture, visit the ULA website at www.ulalaunch.com, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321).

SOURCE United Launch Alliance


Source: newswire