Delta IV rocket launches from Cape Canaveral

Published On: May 24 2013 08:35:03 AM EDT   Updated On: May 24 2013 08:34:06 PM EDT

A Delta IV rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Friday night after a one-day delay to troubleshoot a technical problem.

The 217-foot-tall United Launch Alliance rocket launched at 8:27 p.m. at Launch Complex 37.

An initial attempt was called off Thursday when a leak from a gaseous helium line could not be pinpointed and fixed in time for a launch during the 30-minute window. Gaseous helium is used to purge rocket propulsion systems and keep them properly conditioned for flight.

The Delta IV is taking a $342 million U.S. military communications satellite into orbit.

The Boeing-built Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft is the fifth in a series of new-generation satellites that provide U.S. and allied military forces with high-capacity broadband communications capability. A single Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft provides as much bandwidth as an entire constellation of prior-generation Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) spacecraft.


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