It was third time lucky for the Atlas V rocket that launched from Cape Canaveral at 5:15pm EST on Friday 24th February 2012. After being scrubbed for high-level winds on the first attempt and disturbed weather on it second try it finally took to the skies after a layover of a few days.
Two days before the launch the weather was predicted to be only 20% for a favourable launch. This improved to 60% the day before, 80% on launch day and ended up at 90% heading into the terminal countdown. Obviously the 90% converted into 100% as the Atlas V carrying the US Navy MUOS-1 communications satellite streaked into the sky on its way to a orbit 22,000 miles above the Earth.
Our video catches the launch sequence starting at T-5 seconds with the sun sinking in the west silhouetting the rocket against the blue sky.
Continue reading for our launch report and two galleries of launch pad photos…