AEHF-1 Launch Delayed

The scheduled July 30 launch of the Air Force’s first advanced extremely high frequency communications satellite has been pushed back by 10 days to August 10, service officials announced Wednesday. “This delay was necessary to provide engineers more time to perform confidence testing on a launch vehicle component associated with releasing the fairing support structure,” reads a release from the Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles AFB, Calif. A United Launch Alliance Atlas V booster fired from Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., will carry AEHF-1 into orbit. Lockheed Martin is building a small fleet of AEHF satellites to replace the current Milstar constellation. Like Milstar, AEHF satellites will provide secure and protected communications to military users. But a single AEHF satellite will provide greater total capacity than the entire five-satellite Milstar constellation.