We know next to nothing about this launch's payload — and the Space Force would rather keep it that way.
The new military branch is launching its top secret payload on board a Minotaur IV rocket built by US defense tech company Northrop Grumman — the first time a rocket in its line has flown since 2013.
The exact launch time is classified — but we do know it will launch from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia on Thursday. It’s the Space Force’s first launch from the facility since its establishment in December, according to a mission brief.
We know next to nothing about the nature of the payload. The mission brief is almost comically vague.
“NROL-129 supports NRO’s overall national security mission to provide intelligence data to United States’ senior policy makers, the Intelligence Community and Department of Defense,” it reads.
It also says the NRO’s satellites are meant to “provide global coverage against a wide range of intelligence requirements,” as well as assisting during emergencies and disaster relief efforts.
A live cast of the launch will be made available courtesy of NASA.
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