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Delta IV Heavy Launch: The world’s second most powerful missile loft spy satellite



Delta IV Heavy rocket on launch pad

The Delta IV Heavy rocket, which serves as the backdrop for a 3D projection at Cape Canaveral.

ULA

After months of delays, one of the largest missiles in business today was finally fired from Cape Canaveral, Florida, Thursday on a national security mission for the US National Reconnaissance Office.

A United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy missile carried a classified spy satellite into orbit for a mission called NROL-44.

The launch was originally scheduled for August 26, but was scrubbed multiple times, most recently on September 29, due to technical issues with equipment on the launch pad, as well as the weather. The rocket took off into the dark evening sky just after 5:09 p.m. PT (8:09 p.m. ET).

Delta IV Heavy has performed other NRO missions and also the Parker Solar Probe on the way to investigate our sun.

The lifting capacity of the Delta IV Heavy is second only to that of the SpaceX Falcon Heavy. It is similar to the Falcon Heavy, with its three core boosters forming the main body.

Unlike SpaceX, ULA doesn’t try to land its Delta boosters. Instead, they became exhausted and fell into the Atlantic Ocean.

A new Delta IV launch with yet another secret spy satellite for the US National Reconnaissance Office is expected in early 2021, this time from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.


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