The last flight of United Launch Alliance’s Delta 4-Medium rocket lifted off Aug. 22 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, riding more than 1.2 million pounds of thrust from a hydrogen-fueled main engine and two strap-on solid rocket motors.
The Delta 4 rocket climbed away from Cape Canaveral’s Complex 37 launch pad at 9:06 a.m. EDT (1306 GMT) on Aug. 22 with a U.S. Air Force GPS navigation satellite.
The 207-foot-tall (63-meter) launcher pitched toward the northeast, steering on a course over the Atlantic Ocean with the aid of vectoring rocket nozzles. The rocket was the last to fly in the Delta 4-Medium configuration, with a single core stage instead of the three large liquid-fueled boosters used on the bigger Delta 4-Heavy vehicle.
ULA has five more Delta 4-Heavy missions under contract though late 2023 to carry top secret spy satellites into orbit for the National Reconnaissance Office. Three of those missions are scheduled to launch from Cape Canaveral, and two from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
Read our full story for details on the Aug. 22 mission.
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