ULA scrubs Atlas 5 rocket as a result of stormy climate – Spaceflight Now

Reside protection of the countdown and launch of a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket from pad 41 at Cape Canaveral Area Power Station in Florida. The mission, generally known as USSF 12, will launch the U.S. Area Power’s Vast Area of View Testbed satellite tv for pc and the us 12 Ring spacecraft into geosynchronous orbit. Textual content updates will seem mechanically beneath. Comply with us on Twitter.

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Stormy climate at Cape Canaveral prevented United Launch Alliance from launching an Atlas 5 rocket Thursday with two experimental U.S. Area Power satellites. The launch was rescheduled for Friday at 6 p.m. EDT (2200 GMT)

ULA’s launch crew paused the countdown for practically two hours in hopes climate circumstances would clear earlier than the tip of Thursday’s launch window, however lightning and cloud cowl lingered too lengthy for the launch to go forward. Groups will drain the Atlas 5 of cryogenic propellants in a single day and put together for an additional countdown Friday.

The mission, codenamed USSF 12, would be the fourth Atlas 5 flight of the yr, and the 94th launch of an Atlas 5 rocket total. It’s one in every of 23 Atlas 5s remaining in ULA’s stock earlier than the rocket is retired. ULA, a 50-50 three way partnership between Boeing and Lockheed Martin, is growing the next-generation Vulcan Centaur rocket to interchange the Atlas and Delta rocket households.

One of many payloads on the mission is the Area Power’s Vast Area Of View, or WFOV, Testbed satellite tv for pc to reveal a brand new infrared sensor able to detecting and monitoring missile launches, offering early warning of a possible assault on america of allied nations.

The WFOV spacecraft will experience to area within the higher portion of the Atlas 5 rocket’s payload compartment. A secondary payload, referred to as the us 12 Ring, is positioned beneath the WFOV spacecraft for launch. It hosts a number of payloads, experiments and prototypes, however particulars about their missions are labeled.

A Area Power spokesperson informed Spaceflight Now all the USSF 12 mission, together with the payloads and launch providers, price about $1.1 billion.

ULA’s Atlas 5 rocket on the launch pad earlier than the us 12 mission. Credit score: United Launch Alliance

Following an identical timeline as Thursday’s launch try, the countdown Friday will start at 10:40 a.m. EDT (1440 GMT). ULA groups will activate the Atlas 5 flight pc, full checks of the rocket’s steering system, after which configure the car for the beginning of cryogenic tanking round 4 p.m. EDT (2000 GMT).

Practically 66,000 gallons of liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen can be loaded into the two-stage Atlas 5 rocket. The Centaur higher stage’s Aerojet Rocketdyne RL10 engine burns the hydrogen and oxygen propellant combine, and the Atlas first stage consumes liquid oxygen with 25,000 gallons room-temperature kerosene gas, which was loaded into the rocket Wednesday, quickly after ULA floor crews rolled the Atlas 5 the launch pad from the close by Vertical Integration Facility.

Two built-in holds are deliberate within the countdown, one at T-minus 2 hours and one other at T-minus 4 minutes, earlier than the ultimate four-minute terminal countdown sequence to organize the Atlas 5 rocket liftoff.

The rocket’s propellant tanks can be pressurized, and the RD-180 engine will ignite at T-minus 1 second. After increase thrust on the principle engine, the Atlas 5 will ship the command to mild 4 Northrop Grumman strap-on strong rocket boosters to energy the launcher off pad 41 with 2.3 million kilos of thrust.

The model of the Atlas 5 launching on the us 12 mission is named the “541” configuration, with the primary quantity denoting the dimensions of the payload fairing, the second quantity representing the variety of strong rocket booster, and the third digit the variety of engines on the Centaur stage.

The 196-foot-tall (59.7-meter) Atlas 5 rocket, designated AV-094 for this mission, will head east from Cape Canaveral to focus on the mission’s equatorial orbit greater than 22,000 miles (practically 36,000 kilometers) above Earth.

The Atlas 5 will surpass the pace of sound in 58 seconds, then shed its spent strap-on boosters at T+plus 1 minute, 48 seconds. The 5.4-meter-wide (17.7-foot) composite payload shroud will jettison at T+plus 3 minutes, 25 seconds, and the Russian-made RD-180 core stage engine will fireplace till T+plus 4 minutes, 24 seconds.

This graphic illustrates the elements of the Atlas 5 rocket for the us 12 mission. Credit score: United Launch Alliance

The us 12 mission marks the a hundredth flight of an RD-180 engine because it first launched in Might 2000 on an Atlas 3 rocket.

After separation of the Atlas first stage, ULA’s Centaur higher stage will take over the flight with three burns of its single RL10 engine to first place the 2 Area Power payloads right into a parking orbit, then propel the mission into larger orbits and on a trajectory hugging the equator.

The WFOV Testbed spacecraft, constructed by Millennium Area Programs, will separate from the Centaur higher stage at T+plus 5 hours, 49 minutes. An adapter construction will launch about 10 minutes later, revealing the Northrop Grumman-built USSF 12 Ring payload for separation at T+plus 6 hours, 5 minutes.

ROCKET: Atlas 5 (AV-094)


PAYLOAD: WFOV Testbed and USSF 12 Ring

LAUNCH SITE: SLC-41, Cape Canaveral Area Power Station, Florida

LAUNCH DATE: July 1, 2022

LAUNCH WINDOW: 6:00-8:00 p.m. EDT (2200-0000 GMT)

WEATHER FORECAST: 60% likelihood of acceptable climate



TARGET ORBIT: Roughly 22,440 miles, 0.0 levels inclination


  • T-00:00:01.0: RD-180 ignition
  • T+00:00:01.0: Liftoff
  • T+00:00:06.9: Start pitch/yaw maneuver
  • T+00:00:57.8: Mach 1
  • T+00:01:07.4: Most aerodynamic stress (Max-Q)
  • T+00:01:48.4: Strong rocket booster jettison
  • T+00:03:25.6: Payload fairing jettison
  • T+00:04:24.3: Atlas booster engine cutoff (BECO)
  • T+00:04:30.3: Atlas/Centaur stage separation
  • T+00:04:40.2: Centaur first primary engine begin (MES-1)
  • T+00:10:58.2: Centaur first primary engine cutoff (MECO-1)
  • T+00:23:13.6: Centaur second primary engine begin (MES-2)
  • T+00:28:41.9: Centaur second primary engine cutoff (MECO-2)
  • T+05:43:54.1: Centaur third primary engine begin (MES-3)
  • T+05:46:20.0: Centaur third primary engine cutoff (MECO-3)
  • T+05:49:36.0: WFOV Testbed spacecraft separation
  • T+05:59:03.9: Booster adapter separation
  • T+06:05:21.0: USSF 12 Ring spacecraft separation


  • 676th launch for Atlas program since 1957
  • 377th Atlas launch from Cape Canaveral
  • 265th mission of a Centaur higher stage
  • 242nd use of Centaur by an Atlas rocket
  • 512th manufacturing RL10 engine to be launched
  • fortieth RL10C-1 engine launched
  • a hundredth flight of an RD-180 primary engine
  • 94th launch of an Atlas 5 since 2002
  • thirty sixth U.S. Air Power/Area Power use of an Atlas 5
  • 14th-Seventeenth GEM-63 strong rocket boosters flown
  • 78th launch of an Atlas 5 from Cape Canaveral
  • 4th Atlas 5 launch of 2022
  • 136th Developed Expendable Launch Car flight
  • 151st United Launch Alliance flight total
  • 86th Atlas 5 below United Launch Alliance
  • 109th United Launch Alliance flight from Cape Canaveral
  • thirty fifth 500-series flight of the Atlas 5
  • ninth Atlas 5 to fly within the 541 configuration
  • a hundred and fifth launch from Complicated 41
  • 78th Atlas 5 to make use of Complicated 41
  • twenty eighth orbital launch total from Cape Canaveral in 2022

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