Air Force Buys Space Launch Vehicles

The Air Force on Tuesday awarded United Launch Alliance a $1.5 billion contract for nine evolved expendable launch vehicles to support upcoming national security space missions. Included in this buy are five Atlas V rockets for the launch of the Air Force’s Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-19 weather satellite, Navy’s Mobile User Objective System-3 communications satellite, and three National Reconnaissance Office payloads, according to the Defense Department. Also included are four Delta IV boosters for the launch of DMSP-20, two Global Positioning System Block IIF satellites, and a mission designated Air Force Space Command-4, said DOD. (See Pentagon’s Jan. 10 list of major contracts.)