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ATLAS 5 PIERCES THE NIGHT TO BOOST NATIONAL SECURITY SATELLITE INTO SPACE

ATLAS 5 PIERCES THE NIGHT TO BOOST NATIONAL SECURITY SATELLITE INTO SPACE A covert communications relay station to route spy satellite data directly to users was successfully launched by a million-pound Atlas 5 rocket overnight. The United Launch Alliance rocket left Cape Canaveral under the cover of darkness at 3:28 a.m. EDT (0728 GMT), dodging rain showers while speeding through decks of clouds, for a trek to geosynchronous transfer orbit to deploy the NROL-52 spacecraft. The fifth launch attempt proved to be the charm for NROL-52 after four thwarted tries over the past week, mainly due to bad weather. The last Atlas variant of any kind with this many scrubs was AC-167, the final Atlas 2AS in 2004, that experienced four scrubs and launched on the fifth try.   More



(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Oct 16)

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