United Launch Alliance launched the U.S. Navy's fourth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS-4) satellite this morning from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Lockheed Martin builds the MUOS-4.
The launch happened as scheduled at 5:18 a.m. CDT.
ULA describes the MUOS as a "next-generation narrowband tactical satellite communications system designed using a combination of orbiting satellites and relay ground stations to significantly improve communications for U.S. forces on the move."
This marks the 56th Atlas V launch since the vehicle's first launch in August 2002; the eighth launch in 2015.
“The ULA team is proud to support the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Air Force by delivering this critical communications asset to orbit today,” said Jim Sponnick, ULA vice president, Atlas and Delta Programs. “Today’s successful launch will enable the MUOS constellation to reach global coverage. The Lockheed Martin built MUOS-4 satellite will deliver voice, data, and video communications capability, similar to a cellular network, to our troops all over the globe.”
ULA's next planned Atlas V launch will involve a Morelos-3 communications satellite. It's scheduled for October 2.