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March 26th AEHF-6 launched on Atlas V

Updated: Jun 28, 2020

4:18 pm EST. from SLC-41 Cape Canaveral Air Force Station atop an Atlas V, 551 configuration.

ULA (United Launch Alliance) launched AEHF-6, or Advanced Extremely High Frequency-6 launched in stunning fashion on top of an Atlas V rocket in the 551 configuration. This means the rocket had five SRBs (solid rocket boosters) strapped to it's core. AEHF satellites provide global survivable protected communications for strategic command and tactical war fighters in operation on the land, air, and sea. Atlas V rockets successfully delivered all five previous AEHF satellites and today's launch marks the first launch of the new military branch of the U.S. Space Force.

This also marks ULA's 138th total launch, and the 83rd launch of an Atlas V rocket, and the 11th Launch of an Atlas V in the 551 configuration. The Atlas V rocket is a staple of the U.S. military. Designed as a modular vehicle, each Atlas V is tailored to the needs of it's passengers by the capability to add up to five solid rocket boosters for increased lift.

(pictured is the five SRBs falling back to earth after being jettisoned from the Atlas V rocket)

Despite concerns of the covid-19 virus, Lt. Gen. John Thompson Stated, commander of the U.S. Space Force and Missile Systems Center stated "The AEHF launch is one of those we consider absolutely mission essential, these satellites are hugely important to presidential and national leadership communications in a crisis. They are also essential to war fighters and allies." This deployment ensures the AEHF constellation will stay in service beyond 2030.

Staff was reduced to essential launch personnel only and due to the corona virus, and other precautions have been taken.

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