US: A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket carrying the third Mobile User Objective System (MUOS-3) satellite for the United States Navy launched from Space Launch Complex. The MUOS-3 spacecraft will ensure continued mission capability of the existing Ultra High Frequency Satellite Communications system that will provide improved and assured mobile communications to the warfighter.
“The ULA team is honored to deliver this critical mission into orbit for the US Navy and US Air Force with the support of our many mission partners. The MUOS-3 spacecraft is the heaviest payload to launch atop an Atlas V launch vehicle,” said Jim Sponnick, ULA vice president, Atlas and Delta Programmes. The mission was launched aboard an Atlas V Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) 551 configuration vehicle, which includes a 5 m diameter payload fairing along with five Aerojet Rocketdyne solid rocket motors attached to the Atlas booster. MUOS is a next-generation narrowband tactical satellite communications system designed to significantly improve ground communications to US forces on the move and around the globe.