SpaceX successfully launches US spy satellite

The Falcon 9 rocket's take-off was broadcast live


Published: Sun 17 Apr 2022, 9:34 PM

SpaceX successfully launched one of its Falcon 9 carrier rockets with a US intelligence satellite on board on Sunday, broadcasting the launch live.

The launch took place at the Vandenberg Space Force Base in California at 9.13am local time. The rocket is putting into orbit the NROL-85 mission for the US National Reconnaissance Office (NRO). The mission’s details have not been made public.

The rocket’s first stage has already landed in the vicinity of the launch site. This is its second launch, as it was previously used for putting another intelligence satellite into orbit.


The NRO is a US government agency that develops, builds, launches and operates US spy satellites that provide intelligence data to the 18 agencies comprising the US intelligence community and the Defence Department.

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