UPDATE: ULA Atlas V NROL 101 Scrubbed, due to an unexpected system response from remotely commanded ground system liquid oxygen valves.
Space Coast, FL – Tonight, United Launch Alliance is slated to lift off an Atlas V rocket. The mission is for the National Reconnaissance Office and is named NROL-101. The Atlas V will be flying in the 531 configuration.
What does ‘531 configuration’ mean?
So glad you asked! 5 stands for the 5 meter (diameter) fairing that sits on top of the rocket booster core. The 3 is for the 3 Solid Rocket Boosters (SRBs) that are mated to the stern of the rocket. Finally, the 1 is for the single Centaur 2nd stage engine.
ULA Atlas V Mission – NROL 101
When the United States needs eyes and ears in critical places where no human can reach – be it over the most rugged terrain or through the most hostile territory – it turns to then NRO. The NRO is the U.S. government agency tasked with designing, building, launching and maintaining America’s intelligence satellites. In other words, classified by the DoD (Space Force Department of Defense).
The launch is slated for 1754 EST (2254 UTC) this evening, November 4, 2020.
ULA has successfully delivered 140 missions to orbit that provide Earth observation capabilities and enable global communications. They have sent missions to unlock the mysteries of our solar system and support life-saving technology. We can expect a beautiful launch tonight, weather permitting.
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