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

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A Look at the Science and Experiments Flying Aboard Cygnus 'Deke Slayton II' to ISS

The Orbital ATK Cygnus spacecraft on a previous ISS resupply flight for NASA. Photo Credit: NASA

The Orbital ATK Cygnus spacecraft on a previous ISS resupply flight for NASA. Photo Credit: NASA

In the early evening hours of December 6, a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas-V rocket carrying Orbital ATK’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft, named Deke Slayton II, thundered into the clouds at 4:44 pm EST, headed for the International Space Station […]

Weather Keeps Cygnus Grounded for Second Day in a Row, Will Try Again at Sunset Saturday

Atlas-V with Cygnus OA-4 standing on the pad waiting for weather to cooperate. Next launch attempt is Saturday at 5:10 p.m. EST. Photo Credit: John Studwell / AmericaSpace

For the second time in as many days, United Launch Alliance (ULA) has postponed its record-tying ninth Atlas launch of 2015, due to inclement weather conditions. The mission is carrying Orbital ATK’s long-awaited OA-4 Cygnus cargo mission, bound for the International Space Station (ISS). The Centennial, Colo.-based launch provider’s workhorse Atlas V—flying in its […]

All Systems GO for Twilight Return of Cygnus to Space Station on Atlas-V Thursday

December's OA-4 mission marks the first flight of Orbital ATK's new "Enhanced Cygnus." Photo Credit: John Studwell / AmericaSpace

December’s OA-4 mission marks the first flight of Orbital ATK’s new “Enhanced Cygnus.” Photo Credit: John Studwell / AmericaSpace

More than a year since the catastrophic loss of its ORB-3 mission—which fell back onto Pad 0A at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) on Wallops Island, Va., following the failure and explosion of its Antares […]

PHOTOS: New Improved Cygnus Hoisted Atop ULA's Atlas-V for Dec. 3 Return to Space Station

On Friday, November 20, the Orbital ATK's Cygnus "Deke Slayton II" spacecraft for the OA-4 International Space Station cargo resupply mission was mated to its Atlas V rocket. Launch of the OA-4 mission is scheduled for December 3, 2015 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Space Launch Complex-41. Photo Credit: NASA / Dmitri Gerondidakis

On Friday, Nov. 20, the Orbital ATK’s Cygnus “Deke Slayton II” spacecraft for the OA-4 International Space Station cargo resupply mission was mated to its Atlas V rocket. Launch of the OA-4 mission is scheduled for Dec. 3, 2015, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Space Launch Complex-41. Photo Credit: NASA / Dmitri Gerondidakis

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ULA Offers Universities Free CubeSat Rides on Future Launches, First Slot Goes To CU Boulder

A ULA Atlas-V 401 rocket launching the GPS 2F-11 satellite for the USAF from SLC-41. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

United Launch Alliance (ULA) announced today it is taking CubeSat rideshares to the next level by launching a new, innovative program offering universities the chance to compete for at least six CubeSat launch slots on two Atlas V missions, with a goal to eventually add university CubeSat slots to nearly every Atlas and Vulcan […]

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 […]

NASA Postpones Second Round of Space Station Supply Contract Awards, Drops Boeing

Unmanned version of the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) Dream Chaser space plan proposal for NASA cargo resupply contract docks at the International Space Station. Image Credit: SNC

Unmanned version of the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) Dream Chaser space plan proposal for NASA cargo resupply contract docks at the International Space Station; one of several spacecraft competing for a CRS-2 contract from NASA. Image Credit: SNC

Today NASA announced that they will be postponing the selection of two commercial cargo providers to be […]

Air Force and ULA Reorganize for Competition as Atlas-V Launches GPS 2F-11 Satellite

File photo: Launch of the Air Force GPS 2F-11 satellite atop a ULA Atlas-V rocket on Oct. 31, 2015 from Cape Canaveral, Fla. Photo Credit: Alan Walters / AmericaSpace

Launch of the Air Force GPS 2F-11 satellite atop a ULA Atlas-V rocket on Oct. 31, 2015, from Cape Canaveral, Fla. Photo Credit: Alan Walters / AmericaSpace

The Halloween launch of the Air Force/Boeing GPS 2F-11 satellite on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas-V rocket begins a season of change for ULA and its […]