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Rocket that’s Last of Its Kind Delivers Newest, Most Powerful GPS Satellite to Orbit

United Launch Alliance’s Delta IV medium-class rocket blasted into a hazy morning sky from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

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Rocket, GPS, Satellite
A United Launch Alliance Delta IV rocket lifts off from space launch complex 37 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station with the second Global Positioning System III payload, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Cape Canaveral, Florida. VOA

A rocket that’s the last of its kind delivered the newest, most powerful GPS satellite to orbit for the Air Force on Thursday.

United Launch Alliance’s Delta IV medium-class rocket blasted into a hazy morning sky from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. It was a fitting swan song for the rocket. Company President Tory Bruno tweeted that the liftoff was “hot, straight and normal.”

Two hours later, the satellite separated from the upper stage and the company declared success.

Rocket, GPS, Satellite
A rocket that’s the last of its kind delivered the newest, most powerful GPS satellite to orbit for the Air Force on Thursday. Pixabay

The Delta IV Medium ended its 17-year run with 29 launches. Denver-based United Launch Alliance said it will be replaced by the still-in-development Vulcan rocket. The Delta IV Heavy, meanwhile, will continue to soar.

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The newly launched GPS satellite is the second in a series of next-generation navigation spacecraft. It’s nicknamed Magellan after the 16th-century Portuguese explorer. Lockheed Martin, also based in Colorado, built the satellite. (VOA)

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ISRO Planning to Launch its Surveillance Satellite Soon

The next radar imaging satellite - RISAT-2BR2 - expected to be launched soon will also have two small foreign satellites are piggyback

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India will put into orbit another of its sharp-eyed surveillance satellite RISAT-2BR1 with synthetic aperture radar on December 11, an Indian space agency official said on Tuesday.

“The next space mission is to orbit RISAT-2BR1, a radar imaging satellite. The rocket launch will be on December 11,” an official of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told IANS.

Piggy backing on the 615 kg RISAT-2BR1 in the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) would be four foreign satellites that India will be carrying for a fee.

ISRO
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Chairman K. Sivan, left, and Junior Indian Minister for Department of Atomic Energy and Space Jitendra Singh address a news conference in New Delhi. VOA

According to the official, another radar imaging satellite 2BR2 with synthetic aperture radar will soon follow after December 11 mission.

A clutch of such sharp-eyed satellites are necessary to look down at the earth on a continuous basis.

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In May this year, ISRO had launched 615 kg RISAT-2B.

The next radar imaging satellite – RISAT-2BR2 – expected to be launched soon will also have two small foreign satellites are piggyback. (IANS)