A Delta IV Medium Plus 4,2 rocket successfully launched two security probes from the Air Force, the GSSAP 3 and 4.
The once-classified Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP) embeds its robotic informants just below and just above geosynchronous orbit to perform reconnoitering duties. The first GSSAP duo, launched in July 2014, is in use today by Strategic Command to provide the military maneuverable eyes in this critical region of space.
GSSAP No. 3 and No. 4 were carried to space on Friday Aug 19, 2016 by a United Launch Alliance Delta 4 rocket, lifting off from Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral on the six-hour ascent at 12:52 a.m. EDT (0447 GMT).
Orbital ATK built all four GSSAP satellites for the Pentagon, but the Air Force declined to provide certain details about the program such as launch mass, dimensions of the craft, mission lifespan and cost.
“The technical specifications of the GSSAP vehicles are classified,” the Air Force says.
The papermodel for this presentation is my AXM Delta IV Medium Plus variant in 4,2 configuration. It uses 2 Solid Rocket Motors for this mission. For the first time, I am presenting the Delta IV pad called “Launch Table” which was designed by german cardmodelist Michael Knobloch. The pad is available at my website.
As it is customary, ULA always makes a tribute to a former employee by adding a tribute narrative with the person’s name. For this mission, ULA makes tribute to Ramey Hill.
After reviewing photos online, it appears to be the first time that both types of Solid Rocket Motors were used in combination for this mission. Solid Rocket Motor 1 uses a skirt on the nozzle, and Solid Rocket Motor 2 has no skirt.
The Launch Table has gone through different changes in color through the years. Between 2002 and 2009 it was all white with combined grey and white Service masts. Between 2010 and 2013 the Service Masts were all grey. Since 2014 the Launch Table is fully grey.
AXMDeltaIVMediumAFSPC6 Delta IV Medium +4,2 AFSPC-6 in 1:96 scale
Enjoy this Delta IV model and send your comments.