United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches NASA's Tracking and Data Relay Satellite payload

Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:07am EST

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Atlas V Rocket Processed at Launch Site in Just 27 Days
CAPE CANAVERAL  AIR FORCE STATION, Fla.,  Jan. 31, 2013  /PRNewswire/ -- A
United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket successfully launched NASA's
Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-K) payload at  8:48 p.m. EST  today from
Space Launch Complex-41. This was the first of 13 ULA launches scheduled for
2013, the 35th Atlas V mission, and the 67th ULA launch.

(Photo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130131/SF51763)  

"ULA and our mission partners are honored to work with the outstanding NASA team
and we are proud of the vitally important data relay capabilities that were
safely delivered today," said  Jim Sponnick, ULA vice president, Mission
Operations.  

This mission was launched aboard an Atlas V 401 configuration vehicle, which
includes a 4-meter diameter payload fairing. The Atlas booster for this mission
was powered by the RD AMROSS RD-180 engine and the Centaur upper stage was
powered by a single Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne (PWR) RL10A-4 engine.  

NASA established the TDRS project in 1973 to provide around-the-clock and
around-the-Earth communications for the network that routes voice calls,
telemetry streams and television signals from the International Space Station,
as well as science information from the Hubble Space Telescope and other
orbiting spacecraft. 

"With this team's innovative and ever-present focus on delivering mission
success and best value through Perfect Product Delivery, final work at the Cape
to prepare the Atlas V rocket that launched today was completed in record time -
27 days from when the vehicle was first erected to launch," said Sponnick. "The
ability for ULA to reduce its processing time both during manufacturing and at
the launch sites, offers our customers added manifest flexibility as well as
additional launch opportunities to ensure their payloads are delivered reliably
and on-time."

ULA's next launch is the Atlas V LDCM mission for NASA scheduled  Feb. 11, 2013,
from Space Launch Complex-3 at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

ULA program management, engineering, test, and mission support functions are
headquartered in  Denver, Colo.  Manufacturing, assembly and integration
operations are located at  Decatur, Ala., and  Harlingen, Texas. Launch
operations are located at Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., and  Vandenberg AFB, Calif.

For more information on ULA, visit the ULA Web site at  www.ulalaunch.com, or
call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321). Join the conversation
at  www.facebook.com/ulalaunch  and  twitter.com/ulalaunch.  

SOURCE  United Launch Alliance


Jessica Rye, +1-321-730-5646 (office), +1-321-693-6250 (cell),
jessica.f.rye@ulalaunch.com

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