UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!



Launch Vehicles (U)

(U) U.S. National Security requirements dictate a continuing and highly reliable means of placing satellites into space.

(U) The Titan IV is the primary U.S. heavy lift vehicle and the Titan II launch vehicle currently provides medium lift capabilities. The Titan IV is a heavy-lift space launch vehicle used to carry DoD payloads such as Defense Support Program (DSP) and Milstar satellites into space. Titan II is a medium-lift space launch vehicle used to carry payloads for USAF, NASA and NOAA. The more capable medium lift launch vehicles with upper stage booster system combinations are the Atlas with Centaur and Delta with Payload Assist Modules (PAM-D). Respectively, both support Defense Satellite Communications Systems (DSCS) communications spacecraft and the NAVSTAR Global Positioning System (GPS) navigation semi-synchronous altitude circular orbit spacecraft as well as classified National user and Space Test Program (STP) spacecraft launches.

(U) The Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Program includes the development of both medium and heavy lift variants (MLVs & HLVs) intended to replace the current Atlas, Delta and Titan launch vehicle system combinations with the goal of 25% to 50% life cycle cost savings. The first operational launches for an MLV and an HLV are planned for FY02 and FY08 respectively.

(U) The smallest launch vehicle class is represented by DoD's Rocket System Launch Program (RSLP), which provides for the safe storage, disposal or conversion of deactivated Minuteman II ICBM boosters for science and technology research. Other small launch vehicles used by DoD for this purpose include the commercial Pegasus and Taurus rocket systems. The STP launches and tests new technologies prior to their incorporation into our nation's operational space systems. Consolidated STP funding eliminates the need for the Services and Agencies to create redundant launch capabilities. Economies of scale are achieved through a single STP organization, which also minimizes duplication of experiments/testing through the filtration of the STP Space Experiment Review Board.

(U) The DoD Space Shuttle Operations program consists of long-range planning that develops and maintains analysis tools used to support the space launch requirements' National Mission Model, including the coordination efforts for both normal and contingency Space Shuttle operations. It also supports monitoring of DoD's space technology export controls.

Related Initiatives (U):
Delta IIDelta II
EELV (HLV)Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Heavy Lift Vehicle (HLV)
EELV (MLV)Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Medium Lift Vehicle (MLV)
EELV Follow-OnEELV Follow-On
Military Space PlaneMilitary Space Plane
Rocket System Launch ProgramRocket System Launch Program
Shuttle OperationsShuttle Operations
Titan IITitan II
Titan IVATitan IVA
Titan IVBTitan IVB
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Categories (U):
This Table Is Unclassified.

Road Map Placements (U):

This Table Is Unclassified.

Requirements, Funding and Additional Hotlinks (U):

Shuttle Operations
Shuttle Missions-Columbia
Delta Rockets
Shuttle Missions-Atlantis
Delta Launches
Shuttle Missions-Endeavor
Sattelite Control ORD (95)
Shuttle Missions-Enterprise
Shuttle Missions-Challenger
Shuttle Missions-Discovery
SAF/AQ Homepage
This Table Is Unclassified.

Date Of Information (U):

(U) 21 November 1997

(U) Road Map Production Date: 12 July 1999

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list