ULA launches national security satellite from California

Delta IV Heavy delivers NROL-82 satellite for National Reconnaissance Office

ULA's Delta IV Heavy with the NROL-82 satellite at Space Launch Complex-6, Vandenberg Air Force Base, California on April 26, 2021. (Image: ULA) (ULA)

The powerful Delta IV Heavy rocket blasted off from California Monday afternoon sending a satellite into orbit for the National Reconnaissance Office.

The United Launch Alliance rocket launched from Space Launch Complex-6 at Vandenberg Air Force Base at 4:47 p.m. ET.

The satellite known as NROL-82 will support the NRO’s national security mission.

The Delta IV Heavy is a sight to see at 233 feet tall and with three core stages. It’s top-secret payload is inside a 63-foot-long nose cone.

ULA plans to retire the mega rocket later this year. The private company is inching closer to launching its new rocket, the Vulcan Centaur, from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Space Force Station later this year.

Monday’s liftoff is the first launch of the year from California and for ULA.