Atlas V to launch NROL-79

Set for its first West Coast Launch of 2017, ULA's Atlas V will take to the skies on March 1st with the classified NROL-79 payload for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office, the government agency in charge of all U.S. spy satellites. In all likelihood, this mission will involve a pair of naval reconnaissance satellites flying under the codename Intruder, joining a long-standing program to deliver ship and aircraft tracking data to tactical planners.

As is typical for NRO missions, Atlas V will fly into a pre-arranged News Blackout at the point of payload fairing separation approximately four and a half minutes into the mission to allow NROL-79 to reach its classified orbit without the public watching.

Live Video by United Launch Alliance

Launch Date: March 1, 2017Launch Updates
Window: 17:50 to NLT 18:30 UTCIdentifying NROL-79
Launch Site: SLC-3E, VandenbergAtlas V 401 Launch Vehicle
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V 401Countdown Timeline
Payload: NROL-79 (NOSS 3-8)ULA Archive
Upmass: ~6,500kg 
Target Orbit: 1,010 x 1,200km, 63.4°