Gallery: Awesome ULA Atlas V Blastoff of Air Force AEHF-4 Relay Satellite for American Troops

Up Close Engine view
of the fiery fury spewing from the five first stage Aerojet Rocketdyne solid
rocket boosters and liquid fueled Russian made RD-180 engine after launch of
the ULA Atlas V
carrying the Advanced Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant military communications satellite for
the U.S. Air Force
on Oct. 17, 2018 at 12:15 a.m. ET from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station,
Florida on US national security mission
. Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Ken Kremer 
  
SpaceUpClose.com     20 October 2018


CAPE CANAVERAL
AIR FORCE STATION, FL
  The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket put
on an absolutely awesome display of fire and fury instantly turning night into
day just past midnight Wednesday upon blastoff of the
Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF-4) national security communications satellite for
the U.S. Air Force maintaining global relay connectivity of American & Allied troops and
commanders in worst case scenario of nuclear war.



The 20-story tall ULA Atlas V rocket carrying the $1.8 Billion Lockheed Martin
built AEHF-4 military satcom mission for the U.S. Air Force Space Command
lifted off from Space Launch Complex-41 moments after midnight Oct. 17 at 12:15
a.m. EDT from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL. 



Three
and a half hours after liftoff AEHF-4 was released from the Centaur upper stage
and successfully delivered the 6.8 ton behemoth to geostationary transfer orbit
(GTO). 



After
orbit raising thrust firings over the next few weeks AEHF-4 will operate in geostationary
orbit circling 22,300
miles (36000 kilometers) above Earth
.



Enjoy
all the exquisite action through our exclusive Space UpClose gallery of photos
and videos stationed at the Cape and the launch pad. Check back as the gallery
grows. 



Read
our complete launch story here. 

Streaking to Orbit: Photographers watch at
water edge as United Launch Alliance A
tlas V rocket carrying the Advanced
Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant military
communications satellite for the U.S. Air Force blasts off shortly after
midnight liftoff to geostationary transfer
orbit (GTO) in this long duration exposure photo on Oct. 17, 2018 at 12:15 a.m.
ET from
Space Launch
Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida on a national security
mission securely connecting US troops globally with US national leadership
. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

AEHF-4 is fourth in
line of a jam-resistant six-satellite constellation vital for U.S. National
Defense joining three others already in orbit.



The satellite was encapsulated inside a RUAG Space
built short payload fairing (PLF) – approximately 5.4 meters (17-feet) in
diameter and 20.7 meters (68-feet) tall for the ride to orbit. 

ULA Atlas V rocket carrying the Advanced
Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant
military communications satellite for the U.S. Air Force blasts off shortly
after
midnight liftoff
to geostationary transfer orbit (GTO) on Oct. 17, 2018 at 12:15 a.m. ET from
Space Launch
Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida on US national security
mission
. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The 197 foot tall (60 m) workhorse
Atlas V rocket launched in the commanding 551 configuration which comprises a
LOX & RP-1 kerosene-fueled common core booster powered by a Russian-made
RD-180 main engine, a five
-meter-diameter payload fairing built by RUAG
Space in Switzerland, five first stage strap-on solid rocket motors built by
Aerojet-Rocketdyne and a single RL-10C engine LOX & LH2 fueled Centaur
upper stage. 

Up Close Engine view
of the fiery fury spewing from the five first stage Aerojet Rocketdyne solid
rocket boosters and liquid fueled Russian made RD-180 engine after launch of
the ULA Atlas V
carrying the Advanced Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant military communications satellite for
the U.S. Air Force
on Oct. 17, 2018 at 12:15 a.m. ET from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station,
Florida on US national security mission
. Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The nuclear hardened AEHF
satellites provide secure, protected communications that instantly connect US warfighters
on the ground across the globe with military commanders and top US leadership
including the President
to control their tactical and strategic forces in times of peace and wartime
needs critical to US survival. 



The highly advanced
satellites are designed to withstand fierce radiation pummeling in nightmare
scenarios from enemy nuclear attacks.   

Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Watch my launch video here to experience the sound and fury Up Close at the launch pad:



Video Caption: Mightiest ULA Atlas V rocket roars to life carrying Advanced
Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant
military communications satellite for US Air Force Space Command shortly after
midnight
Oct. 17, 2018,
12:15 a.m. ET from
Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station,
Florida on US national security mission
– as seen in
this video camera stationed at pad.
Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
The AEHF satellites are
equipped with 2 SHF Downlink Phased Arrays, 2 Crosslinks, 2 Uplink/Downlink
Nulling Antennas, 1 Uplink EHF Phased Array, 6 Uplink/Downlink  Gimbaled
Dish Antenna, 1 Each Uplink/downlink earth coverage horns.

The data rate capability
ranges from 75 bps to approximately 8 Mbps.





Streaking to Orbit: United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying the Advanced Extremely High Frequency AEHF-4 jam resistant military communications satellite for
the U.S. Air Force blasts off shortly after
midnight liftoff to geostationary transfer
orbit (GTO) in this long duration exposure photo on Oct. 17, 2018 at 12:15 a.m.
ET from
Space Launch
Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida on a national security
mission securely connecting US troops globally with US national leadership
. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The AEHF system includes
international partners from the United Kingdom, Canada and the Netherlands.


Launch of AEHF-4. Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Watch for Ken’s
continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin,
Orbital ATK and more space and mission reports direct from the Kennedy Space
Center, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida and Wallops Flight Facility,
Virginia.



Stay tuned here for Ken’s continuing Earth and Planetary science
and human spaceflight news: www.kenkremer.com –www.spaceupclose.com –
twitter @ken_kremer – email: ken at kenkremer.com



Dr. Kremer is a research
scientist and journalist based in the KSC area.

.……….



Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events
















Ken Kremer

Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and more space and mission reports direct from Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Stay tuned here for Ken's continuing Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news. Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about space topics. Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events.

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