ULA & USAF Dazzle West Coast with Delta-IV Night Launch of NRO-45 Topaz-4 Satellite

A top secret 8-ton National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)/Boeing Topaz imaging radar satellite was successfully launched into a retrograde polar orbit before dawn Feb. 10 from Vandenberg AFB, Calif. atop a ULA Delta-IV Medium. Mission NROL-45. Photo Credit: Robert Fisher / AmericaSpace

A top secret 8-ton National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)/Boeing Topaz imaging radar satellite was successfully launched into a retrograde polar orbit before dawn Feb. 10 from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., atop a ULA Delta-IV Medium. Mission NROL-45. Photo Credit: Robert Fisher / AmericaSpace

A top secret, 8-ton National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)/Boeing Topaz imaging radar satellite was […]

Vandenberg Readies Secret NRO Topaz Imaging Radar Satellite for ULA Delta-IV Launch Feb. 10

Image Credit: ULA

ULA is set to launch NROL45 on a Delta-IV from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., at 3:39 a.m. PST Feb. 10. The mission will deliver the NRO/Boeing Topaz imaging radar reconnaissance satellite to orbit. Image Credit: ULA

A top secret, 8-ton National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)/Boeing Topaz imaging radar reconnaissance satellite is poised for liftoff […]

Cape/KSC Spaceport Faces Fantastic 2016 with Especially Significant GPS Kickoff Feb. 5

Propelled by its three 'cores', the Falcon Heavy is expected to make its maiden voyage in April 2016. This behemoth will cement its credentials as the most powerful rocket in current operational status, overtaking the Delta IV Heavy. Image Credit: SpaceX

Propelled by its three “cores,” the Falcon Heavy is expected to make its maiden voyage in fall 2016. This behemoth will cement its credentials as the most powerful rocket in current operational status, overtaking the Delta IV Heavy. Image Credit: SpaceX

The planned Feb. 5 launch of a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas-V carrying […]

RD-180 Engine Procurement Ban Overturned, Revealing Sharp Space Policy Differences

Twin nozzle RD-180 engines, which power ULA's Atlas-V rocket and many of the nation's national security payloads into space, await shipment to the U.S. from Energomash in Khimky Russia. Photo Credit: Energomash

Twin nozzle RD-180 engines, which power ULA’s Atlas-V rocket and many of the nation’s national security payloads into space, await shipment to the U.S. from Energomash in Khimky Russia. Photo Credit: Energomash

In a major military space policy shift, United Launch Alliance (ULA) will be allowed to procure more Russian RD-180 engines for the […]

Gov't Officials Pummel ULA and Raytheon for Poor Atlas-V Judgement and GPS III Ground Segment Performance

Like the OA-4 mission in December 2015, tomorrow's OA-6 will ride an Atlas V booster to orbit. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

A ULA Atlas-V rocket, powered by a Russian RD-180 engine, lofts Orbital ATK’s Cygnus cargo freighter to the International Space Station Dec 6, 2015. ULA and Raytheon were pummeled by Sen. McCain and USAF Gen. Hyten this week over poor Atlas-V judgement and GPS-III ground segment performance. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

Story […]

MUOS-4 Completes On-Orbit Testing Ahead of Operational Acceptance Next Spring

File photo of the U.S. Navy's MUOS-4 satellite, which this week completed on-orbit testing and was officially accepted by the Navy to go operational next spring. Photo Credit: Lockheed Martin

File photo of the U.S. Navy’s MUOS-4 satellite, which this week completed on-orbit testing and was officially accepted by the Navy to go operational next spring. Photo Credit: Lockheed Martin

The fourth in a Lockheed Martin-built five-ship fleet for a next-generation, narrowband tactical military satellite communications system was officially accepted by the U.S. Navy this […]

ULA Firm On No Bid Face-off With USAF on RD-180 and GPS-III Launch Procurement Policy

A United Launch Alliance Atlas-V rocket launching with the U.S. Air Force GPS 2F-11 satellite Oct. 31, 2015. The USAF believes that ULA had options that would have allowed it to bid on the initial GPS III launch in 2018, but given ULA’s RD-180 engine supply, the company decided instead to cede that launch to SpaceX. Photo Credit: John Studwell / AmericaSpace

A United Launch Alliance Atlas-V rocket launching with the U.S. Air Force GPS 2F-11 satellite Oct. 31, 2015. The USAF believes that ULA had options that would have allowed it to bid on the initial GPS III launch in 2018, but given ULA’s RD-180 engine supply, the company decided instead to cede that launch […]

ULA and Lockheed Sway Between Successes of the Past and Problems in the Near Future

The Air Force's GPS IIF-11 satellite, encapsulated inside a 4-meter payload fairing, is mated to an Atlas V rocket at the Vertical Integration Facility or VIF. Photo: ULA

GPS IIF-11, the Air Force’s penultimate GPS IIF series satellite is encapsulated inside an Atlas V 4-meter payload fairing. Photo Credit: ULA

The scheduled Oct. 30 launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station of a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas-V rocket carrying the Boeing GPS 2F-11 navigation satellite marks a tale of two eras. The Atlas-V on […]

First Hundred, Next Hundred: ULA Celebrates Centenary, Readies for Challenges Ahead

A ULA Atlas-v rocket thunders skyward from Cape Canaveral AFS with a top-secret payload for the National Reconnaissance Office on April 10 2014. Mission NROL-67. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

A ULA Atlas-v rocket thunders skyward from Cape Canaveral AFS with a top-secret payload for the National Reconnaissance Office on April 10 2014. Mission NROL-67. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

With the dust having barely settled on the East Coast, following the Oct. 2 pre-dawn liftoff of its 100th mission—carrying Mexico’s Morelos-3 communications satellite from Cape […]

Thursday's Atlas-V NRO-55 Launch to Revitalize Ocean Surveillance Assets and Multiple Space Technologies

Two secret National Reconnaissance Office/U.S. Navy ocean surveillance satellites are set for launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Ca. Oct. 8 on the NROL-55 flight that will also deploy 13 advanced technology CubeSats. The military space mission is planned for liftoff from Space Launch Complex 3E at 5:49 a.m. PDT (8:49 a.m. EDT) on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas-V 401 launch vehicle with no solid rocket boosters. The launch window is expected to run until 6:30 a.m. PDT. Image Credit: ULA

Two secret National Reconnaissance Office/U.S. Navy ocean surveillance satellites are set for launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Ca. Oct. 8 on the NROL-55 flight that will also deploy 13 advanced technology CubeSats. The military space mission is planned for liftoff from Space Launch Complex 3E at 5:49 a.m. PDT (8:49 a.m. EDT) on […]