US company ULA launched an Atlas V rocket with military satellites
United Launch Alliance (ULA) launched an Atlas V launch vehicle with military companions. The spacecraft were launched by order of the US Space Force. This is reported by TASS.
The rocket, the first stage of which received the Russian RD-180 engine, was launched from the cosmodrome at Cape Canaveral (Florida) on December 7, at 05:22 am US East Coast time (13:22 Moscow time). The launch was originally planned for December 5, but the launch was postponed due to a fuel leak in the ground storage.
Atlas V carries STPSat-6 and LDPE-1 satellites, which were developed by Northrop Grumman. The ULA press service noted that the vehicles will be launched into geostationary orbit. The LDPE-1 satellite is designed to test new technological developments.
The STPSat-6 satellite has received equipment for tracking nuclear explosions on the Earth's surface and in underground complexes. The device will be able to transmit information to the Pentagon and the US Department of Energy's National Nuclear Safety Administration (NSNSA).
STPSat-6 has also been equipped with NASA communications equipment that converts electrical signals into modulated laser radiation in the infrared range. This will allow data exchange at a speed of 1.2 gigabits per second.
Earlier, The Independent noted that more than a third of the satellites in Earth's orbit are controlled by SpaceX. The company controls 37 percent of the total number of active satellites.