Atlas V Rocket Launches SBIRS GEO Flight 3 Missile-Warning Satellite

Posted: Jan 21 2017, 11:58am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

Atlas V Rocket Launches SBIRS GEO Flight 3 Missile-Warning Satellite
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A new missile warning satellite is on its way through atlas V rocket

New rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Jan 20. The rocket named United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket will place missile and warning satellite for US military.

The rocket is 19 stories tall that started its first mission of 11 missions. The rocket took off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 7:42 p.m. EST, according to

The launch was supposed to be on a day before actual launch, but it delayed due to its accidental lunch in restricted area on January 19. There was an issue with rocket sensors that had to be fixed.

The U.S. Air Force's SBIRS Geo-3 missile warning satellite is now on its way through Atlas V rocket. The satellite was built by Lockheed Martin Corp. in Sunnyvale, Calif. Weight of the rocket is 10,000 lbs, and it’s a part of US military network that investigate any warning of enemy missiles.

The launch will also replace legacy Defense Support Program satellites that were sent into orbit from 1970 to 2007. The satellite will give more precise and fast warning to the military, and will detect even smaller events than DSP satellites, said Dennis Bythewood, director of the Remote Sensing Systems Directorate at the Air Force's Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles.

The satellite will also do other tasks, like enhancing point of origin and impact prediction and will also fulfill difference defense requirement in a common system.

The satellite costs about $1.2 billion, including the launch, and it will join two more satellites above the planet. The fourth SBIRS will complete its constellation and will fly in November. Two more Geo satellites are under construction.

The mission has different parts, including missile warning like missile launch detection, missile defense, battle space awareness and technical intelligence, said Bythewood. The information collected by these satellites also helps in certain civilian matters.

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