A Boeing [NYSE:BA] Delta II 7320-10 rocket lifted off today from Space Launch Complex 2W at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., at 11:51 a.m. PDT carrying the DigitalGlobe QuickBird imaging satellite. One hour and 30 seconds later, the spacecraft was successfully deployed to a sun-synchronous orbit.
Today's launch is the first of two Delta II launches at Vandenberg this year for the Boeing Delta team. The Boeing Delta II was selected by DigitalGlobe to deploy QuickBird because of the launch vehicle's 100 percent mission success record since 1997.
"Today's successful mission continues the Boeing Delta II's reputation of reliability," said Jay Witzling, vice president, Delta and Titan deputy program manager for Boeing Expendable Launch Systems. "I'm also proud of our Delta team in deploying QuickBird for DigitalGlobe in less than a year from the time we received the order, proving our team's capability to meet our customers' scheduling requirements."
"The Boeing Company has been fantastic during the launch campaign, they have been able to meet all of our accelerated schedule needs. Bottom line is that they met the schedule and deployed our satellite using the most reliable rocket," stated Herb Satterlee, president and chief executive officer of DigitalGlobe.
Mr. Satterlee also stated, "Our customers worldwide have been anticipating this launch for quite some time and we are very pleased to announce a successful deployment of the world's highest resolution commercial imaging satellite, QuickBird."
Applications of the QuickBird satellite include mapping, urban planning, agricultural monitoring, environmental impact assessment, and disaster assessment and response.
QuickBird is owned and operated by DigitalGlobe of Longmont, Colo. The developer of the spacecraft is Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. of Boulder, Colo.
The Boeing Company, headquartered in Chicago, is the largest aerospace company in the world and the United States' leading exporter. It is the world's largest manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft, and the largest NASA contractor. The company's capabilities in aerospace also include rotorcraft, electronic and defense systems, missiles, rocket engines, launch vehicles, satellites, and advanced information and communication systems. The company has an extensive global reach with customers in 145 countries and manufacturing operations throughout the United States, Canada and Australia.
Boeing Delta Web Site: www.boeing.com/delta