Spy Satellite To Launch From California's Vandenberg AFB

Elias Hubbard
January 13, 2018

A rocket launch delayed twice this week is set to take place Friday afternoon at Vandenberg Air Force Base.

The rocket will carry a National Reconnaissance Office spy satellite, with the mission dubbed NROL-47.

Mission NROL-47 is scheduled for Vandenberg's Space Launch Complex-6 near the Pacific Ocean, about 10 miles west of Lompoc and 140 miles west-northwest of downtown Los Angeles.

Coverage of the launch will begin about 25 minutes prior to liftoff, or 4:30 p.m. EST.

The launch had initially been planned for Wednesday, but was pushed to a day later due to high ground winds, base officials reported Wednesday. The weather forecast shows a 90-percent chance of favorable conditions for a Friday launch, according to ULA.

Founded in 2006, ULA is a joint venture of Boeing and Lockheed Martin.

While details about the payload are classified, groups of amateur satellite trackers can use clues to narrow down the nature of the satellite, including its likely orbit and technology.

In the aftermath of the alleged failure, SpaceX claimed its rocket performed as expected, implying the blame for the Zuma mission lay elsewhere.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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