June 18, 2007

U.S. Launches Secret Spy Satellites

U.S. launches secret spy satellites

WASHINGTON, June 15 (Xinhua) -- The United States launched a pair of intelligence-gathering satellites on Friday from Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S. media reported.

The top-secret satellites were carried by an An Atlas V rocket, which blasted off from Cape Canaveral at 11:14 a.m. Friday local time, and were reportedly to be used to track ships moving at sea.

The satellites were launched for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), a division of the Defense Department that builds and operates spy satellites.

This was the ninth launch of the Atlas V rocket, built by Lockheed Martin Corp.

An attempt to launch the rocket on Thursday was postponed due to problems with the safety mechanism that would destruct the rocket in case of malfunction.

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