First Atlas Launch of 2016 Set For Blastoff with Air Force GPS Satellite on Feb. 5 – Watch Live

ULA Atlas V carrying UASF GPS navigation satellite is poised for blastoff on Feb. 5, 2016 from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.  Newly installed crew access tower stands to right of Atlas rocket. Credit: Ken Kremer/

CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION – The first launch of 2016 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, is poised for blastoff on Friday, Feb. 5, and features a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying a US Air Force payload that will fortify the GPS constellation of navigation satellites that is critically important to military and civilian users on a 24/7 basis.The commercial Atlas V rocket was rolled out to Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida this morning, Thursday, Feb. 4. The USAF Global Positioning System GPS IIF-12 satellite is encapsulated in the 4 meter diameter nosecone. Liftoff of ULA’s workhorse Atlas V rocket from the seaside pad 41 is slated for 8:38 a.m. EST, at the opening of a 19-minute long launch window.Scores of spectators from across the country are gathering to witness this maiden Cape launch of 2016, as local hotels sell out.You can also watch a live webcast of the Feb. 5 launch via ULA’s website here: http://www.ulalaunch.comThe live broadcast will begin at 8:18 a.m. EST and features informative commentary all about the Atlas V rocket and the importance and uses of the GPS constellation of satellites.In case any last minute weather or technical issues arise, ULA can still launch the rocket until the window closes at 8:57 a.m. EST.The current weather forecast shows a 40% chance of favorable weather conditions at launch time. The primary concerns are for clouds and high ground level winds. Heavy rains are currently rolling through the Florida space coast area on Thursday afternoon and evening.In case of a scrub, the next launch opportunity is Saturday.The GPS IIF-12 satellite is the last of the current generation GPS satellites,” incorporating various improvements to provide greater accuracy, increased signals, and enhanced performance for users.”“GPS satellites serve and protect our warfighters —> Read More