A US intelligence agency reported Wednesday that its latest spy satellite was successfully launched into orbit by a SpaceX Falcon 9 reusable rocket.
The rocket took off at 12:27 pm local time (5:27 pm GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), in charge of the US Space Force, said in a statement.
After putting the satellite, called NROL-87, into orbit, Falcon 9 landed back at base, the agency revealed.
“The NROL-87 was designed, built and operated by the NRO to support its aerial reconnaissance mission,” the statement said.
The NRO gave some details about the satellite, adding that it “will provide a wider range of intelligence information in a timely manner.”
The NRO, a division of the US Department of Defense, operates a massive network of surveillance satellites and is based near Washington, Virginia.
NROL-87 is the first satellite launched by the NRO in 2022 and marks the third time the agency has used a Falcon 9 rocket. In the past two years, the NRO has launched 16 more satellites.
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