The United Launch Alliance is set to launch a satellite aboard one of the last single-core Delta IV rockets tonight, and it will officially be the 39th launch of the Delta IV since its first in 2002. The rocket will be carrying WGS-10, a military communications satellite, with the window opening at 6:56 p.m. and remaining open until 9:05 p.m. This satellite is the latest part of a constellation of highly-capable communications satellites that serve the armed forces of the United States and its allies, carrying a Ka-band and X-band transponders with a total 8.088 gigahertz of bandwidth – offering downlink speeds of up to 11 gigabits per second. Read more for the livestream video, which begins in approximately 2-hours from the time of this post.
“Delta IV was designed by McDonnell Douglas and was developed by Boeing under the US Air Force’s Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program after the companies merged in 1997. To assure access to space, the EELV program saw two rockets developed to share and compete for military launch opportunities. Alongside Boeing’s Delta IV, Lockheed Martin’s Atlas V rocket was also selected for development. Boeing was initially awarded the lion’s share of the missions, however following revelations of corporate espionage several flights were re-awarded to Atlas,” reports NASA Space Flight.