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NASA Launching Department Of Defense Rocket And Satellite From Virginia June 28

(20 June 2011) A U.S. Air Force Minotaur 1 rocket carrying the Department of Defense's Operationally Responsive Space office's ORS-1 satellite is scheduled for launch June 28 from NASA's Launch Range at the Wallops Flight Facility and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia.

ORS-1 is the Operationally Responsive Space Office's first operational satellite.  Rapidly developing and fielding ORS-1 is an important step to demonstrate the capability to meet emerging and persistent war-fighter needs on operationally relevant timelines.

The Minotaur 1 rocket, integrated by Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC), is a four-stage vehicle, two stages being refurbished Minuteman II stages and the other two stages being OSC developed. The Minotaur is about 70 feet tall and 5 feet wide. The U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center's Space Development and Test Wing has overall mission management responsibility.

This will be the fourth Minotaur 1 rocket launched from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility and the Spaceport since December 2006.

Based on the approved range schedule, the rocket is set for launch between 8:28 and 11:28 p.m. EDT.  The backup launch days are June 29 – July 10. The launch may be visible, depending on cloud cover and one's viewing location, in the eastern United States from southern New York to North Carolina.  It may be seen as far west from the Atlantic Coast as West Virginia and western Pennsylvania.

(source: NASA)
 

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