CAPE CANAVERAL – The next launch scheduled to take place off of Florida’s Space Coast – has been postponed again. The launch of a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket will carry a National Reconnaissance Office NRO payload has been pushed back yet again. The launch was slated to take place on Nov. 18, 2010, at 6:10 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EDT). That was pushed back 24 hours to allow engineers to replace bolts that were not up to standard.
The new launch date was set for Nov. 19, at 6:06 p.m. – but this too was not to be. As technicians began to fuel up the rockets twin strap on boosters encountered temperature anomalies. Estimates of when the launch would be rescheduled for range from 24 to 48 hours. Whenever the launch takes place, it will take place from Space Launch Complex 37 (SLC 37) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
The payload for this mission is a classified spy satellite. In media advisories released by the 45th Space Wing it is described only as a ‘Galaxy 3.’ The 45th is stationed out of Patrick Air Force Base. The Delta IV Heavy is the largest rocket in the Delta 4 family, with three booster cores combined to form what is essentially a triple-bodied rocket.