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Boeing-Built Satellite Completes NASA's Space Communications Network

18 Août 2017

The rocket was launched at approximately 8:30 a.m. on Friday.

The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket is seen in a December 2015 image in place at Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Ground controllers report the satellite is in good health at the start of a four-month checkout in space by its manufacturer, Boeing.

The space agency in a statement said, the satellite will support critical space communication into the mid-2020s. The role of these geosynchronous spacecraft is to provide data back to Earth from the Hubble space telescope, the International Space Station, and a range of other spacecraft set out on exploratory missions in relatively close proximity to Earth.

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"TDRS-M will expand the capabilities and extend the lifespan of the Space Network, allowing us to continue receiving and transmitting mission data well into the next decade", Littmann said.

Boeing conducted spacecraft integration and testing earlier this year at its satellite factory in El Segundo, California.

The Atlas V 401 rocket is known as the workhorse of United Launch Alliance's fleet, having previously flown 35 missions.

Boeing-Built Satellite Completes NASA's Space Communications Network