Vandenberg Launch

Clint Bradford

The following information is valid as of 2018 December 19 at 12:34 PST:

This evening's planned launch of a Delta IV Heavy rocket from Vandenberg AFB appears to be on schedule. Liftoff is slated for 5:44 p.m. PST from south Vandenberg. The most recent weather forecast called for an 80% probability of acceptable weather at launch time.

If the sky is clear, the launch could be visible over a wide area. Computer simulations by Rick Balrdridge show if the rocket is launched on time, it will climb into sunlight at high altitude during the powered portion of the launch at T+ 4 minutes 20 seconds. In other words, the rocket's exhaust plume should be illuminated by the sun with a dark sky as a background.

For launch and countdown status and launch coverage, go to:

Clint Bradford

Hydrogen leak - scrubbed.

Clint Bradford

The following is a media update from the United Launch Alliance:

ULA Delta IV Heavy NROL-71 will Launch NET Jan. 6, 2019

(Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. Dec. 28, 2018) – The United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy carrying the NROL-71 mission will launch no earlier than Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019. The mission will launch from Space Launch Complex-6 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

Clint Bradford

LAUNCH UPDATE: The ULA Delta IV Heavy carrying the NROL-71 mission launch date is under review. A new launch date and time will be provided pending the results of additional testing.
“We continue to remedy the technical issues that caused the last scrub of the Delta IV Heavy, and are working with our partners, the National Reconnaissance Office and the U.S. Air Force, to ensure that we fly when it is safe to do so,” said Gary Wentz, vice president of Government and Commercial programs, “we understand that this is a high-priority mission for the nation’s warfighters and we take our commitment to safety and mission assurance seriously.”