Breaking News Emails
A U.S. military weather satellite, refurbished after more than a decade in storage, blasted off aboard an unmanned Atlas 5 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on Thursday.
The rocket put the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program spacecraft into a 530-mile-high orbit passing over Earth's poles. The $518 million satellite, known as DMSP-19 and built by Lockheed Martin, joins six other operational DMSP satellites already in orbit.
The U.S. Air Force was prepared to launch DMSP-19 about 15 years ago — but the satellites in orbit were lasting much longer than expected, so it went into storage instead.