US launches reconnaissance satellites into orbit for the National Directorate of Military Space Intelligence
The United States has launched three new reconnaissance satellites into orbit for the United States National Aerospace Intelligence Agency (NRO). The launch of the launch vehicle was broadcast by NASA.
The Minotaur I launch vehicle took off from the LP-0B launch pad of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Cosmodrome on Wallops Island in Virginia at 09.35 US East Coast time (16.35 Moscow time). The rocket is to launch three NROL-111 reconnaissance satellites into orbit. There are no details about the characteristics and detailed information about the purpose due to the secrecy of the project. By the way, in connection with this, the broadcast of the launch lasted only 2 minutes and was interrupted.
According to some specialized publications, the United States launched satellites into space for a network of "ultra-protected and protected from electromagnetic radiation" of the AEHF relay communications satellites.
The US National Aerospace Intelligence Administration (NRO) explained that this launch was the second in the interests of the service in the past 12 months.
- said in the message of the NRO.
The solid-propellant four-stage Minotaur I launch vehicle is developed on the basis of the sustainer stages of the Minuteman and Peacekeeper intercontinental ballistic missiles commissioned by the US Air Force. Developed by Orbital Sciences Corporation (now part of Northrop Grumman). Designed for launching small spacecraft into low-earth orbit. The first rocket launch took place on January 27, 2000.
Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest news and the most important events of the day.