Kennedy News

George H. Diller
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.

Sept. 25, 2009
RELEASE : 47-09
Delta II NASA Launch for Missile Defense Agency Successful
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- A Delta II rocket managed by NASA's Launch Services Program lifted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Friday with two spacecraft for the United States Missile Defense Agency. The Space Tracking and Surveillance System Demonstrator mission, or STSS Demo, lifted off from Pad B at Launch Complex 17 at 8:20 a.m. EDT.

The launch vehicle was a United Launch Alliance Delta II 7920-10c. The final spacecraft separation for the second of two satellites occurred 55 minutes after liftoff.

"With confirmation of the payload's delivery into the correct orbit, the launch is a success," said Omar Baez, launch director for the NASA Launch Services Program headquartered at Kennedy Space Center.

The STSS Demo mission is a space-based sensor component of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. The two spacecraft will use sensors capable of detecting visible and infrared light to provide timely and accurate acquisition and tracking of potentially threatening ballistic missiles. The satellites have a two-year mission life and four-year design life.

NASA also managed the launch of another mission for the Missile Defense Agency aboard a Delta II rocket in May from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

For more information about NASA's Launch Services Program, visit:


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