ULA Delta IV Heavy Rocket Set to Deploy NRO Mission Saturday

United Launch Alliance is slated to deploy a National Reconnaissance Office payload aboard a Delta IV Heavy rocket at the Vandenberg Air Force Base.

The launch will take place Saturday at 2:05 pm Eastern Time as part of the agency's NROL-71 mission, ULA said Tuesday.

ULA moved the launch from its previous schedule in December to test the rocket and address technical concerns.

Delta IV Heavy is composed of a Delta Cryogenic Second Stage and three hydrogen-fueled booster cores and can store up to 465K gallons of fuel. A composite payload fairing will shield the spacecraft's cargo during atmospheric ascent.

The deployment represents ULA's 38th Delta IV mission from 2002 and the second Delta IV Heavy launch within four months.

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