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Atlas V launch scheduled

  • Published
  • By 081009
Vandenberg is scheduled to launch an Atlas V rocket carrying a Defense Meteorological Satellite Program payload from South Vandenberg's Space Launch Complex-3 on Sunday with a current launch window of 9:00 to 9:30 a.m.

Col. Steven Winters, 30th Space Wing vice commander, will be the spacelift commander for this mission. 

This will be the second Atlas V and the first Air Force payload to be launched on an Atlas V from Vandenberg.

Atlas V is part of the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle family. The program, which began in the 1990s with the goal of making government space launches more affordable and reliable, resulted in the development of two launch systems, Delta IV and Atlas V.

The DMSP designs, builds, launches, and maintains satellites monitoring the meteorological, oceanographic, and solar-terrestrial physics environments for the Department of Defense. Each DMSP satellite has a 101 minute, sun-synchronous near-polar orbit at an altitude of 830km above the surface of the earth. DMSP sensors collect images across a 3000km swath, providing global coverage twice per day.

Once operational, the DMSP payload will be managed by Airmen from the 6th Space Operations Squadron, an all Air Force Reserve unit stationed out of Schriever AFB, Colo.

Questions concerning the Atlas V can be forwarded to Mike Rein from United Launch Alliance at (321) 693-6250.

Note to Editors: The following media opportunities are available for members of the media accredited by 30th Space Wing Public Affairs. For accreditation, call 1st Lt Ray Geoffroy at (805) 606-3595. 

Remote camera set-up: Media members who want to set up sound-activated remote cameras on the launch pad need to contact 1st Lt Ray Geoffroy at (805) 606-3595 by 4 p.m., Friday. Camera set-up will occur Saturday from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. A caravan will depart the VAFB South Gate at 9:00 a.m. 

Launch viewing of the Atlas V: Sunday, departing the VAFB Main Gate at 8:00 a.m.