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United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches 2nd COSMO Satellite

Delta II COSMO-SkyMed 2 Mission Booklet

 -- A United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket successfully launched the second Italian-built Constellation of Small Satellites for Mediterranean Basin Observation or COSMO-SkyMed 2 satellite at 6:31 p.m. PST, today. Blasting off from Space Launch Complex 2, it marked the third successful Delta II vehicle launch by Boeing Launch Services, a division of Network and Space Systems, of a commercial satellite."ULA is pleased to have successfully launched the second of four critical Earth observation systems in this series for our customer," said Mark Wilkins, ULA vice president of Delta programs. "Our launch team is comprised of the most experienced engineers and technicians in the industry and we look forward to continuing to provide reliable, innovative and cost effective launch services for many future commercial launches."

The ULA Delta II 7420-10 configuration vehicle featured an ULA first stage booster powered by a Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-27A main engine and four Alliant Techsystems (ATK) strap-on solid rocket boosters. An Aerojet AJ10-118K engine powered the second stage. The payload was encased by a 10-foot-diameter composite payload fairing. ULA began processing the Delta II launch vehicle in Decatur, Ala., nearly two years ago. In late August, the 1st stage arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base from Decatur, followed by the 2nd stage later early October. The vehicle was erected on the stand at the pad Oct. 9, with solid rocket booster installation complete mid-October. Hundreds of ULA technicians, engineers and management worked to prepare the vehicle for the COSMO-2 mission. Developed by Thales Alenia Space, Italia for the Italian Space Agency and the Ministry of Defense, COSMO-2 is the second of the four COSMO-SkyMed satellites. COSMO-SkyMed 3 will be launched about a Delta II vehicle from SLC-2 in the second half of 2008.

Each satellite is a constellation of four radar satellites and is equipped with a high-resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar operating in X-band. The overall objective of the program is global Earth observation and relevant data responding to the needs of the military and scientific community, as well as to the public demand for environmental control. ULA's next launch, currently scheduled for no earlier than Dec. 10, is the L-24 satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office aboard an Atlas V from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Formed in 2006, ULA combines the successful Atlas and Delta expendable launch vehicle programs offering cost-effective and reliable launch services to U.S. government customers, including the Department of Defense, NASA, the National Reconnaissance Office and other commercial organizations. ULA program management, engineering, test and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver, Colo. Manufacturing, assembly and integration operations are located at Decatur, Ala., Harlingen, Texas and San Diego, Calif. Launch operations are located at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., and Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

For more information on the ULA joint venture, visit the ULA website at www.ulalaunch.com, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321).