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Vandenberg Space Force Base to celebrate 2,000th launch with Landsat 9 takeoff

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United Launch Alliance.
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United Launch Alliance.
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United Launch Alliance.

VANDENBERG SPACE FORCE BASE, Calif. - Team Vandenberg will be celebrating its 2,000th launch on Monday with the scheduled takeoff of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket.

The rocket is set to launch around 11:11 a.m. PDT from Space Launch Complex-3. It will be carrying the NASA Launch Program Landsat 9 observatory into a near-polar, sun-synchronous orbit.

Landsat is a decades-old partnership between NASA, the U.S. Geological Survey and United Launch Alliance.

New satellites will photograph the earth for landscape changes including those caused by climate change.

Col. Rob Long will be the launch decision authority on this historic mission from the Western Range on Vandenberg Space Force Base.

“The 2000th launch gives us the opportunity to celebrate the tens of thousands from Team Vandenberg, past and present, who share a proud heritage beginning with the first launch in 1958 through this 2000th launch,” said Long. “Space—and launch—is hard. Our record of success is a testament to longstanding mission excellence.”

Vandenberg said the unique geographic location of its base makes it a safe and ideal setting for test launching intercontinental ballistic missiles, intermediate-range ballistic missiles and for placing satellite payloads into polar orbit.

To celebrate its milestone launch, Vandenberg is inviting the public to watch the takeoff from the Hawk's Nest on Highway 1 just half a mile south from the base's main gate.

The Hawk's Nest gates will open at 9:45 a.m. on Monday.

For more information and updates on the Landsat 9 launch, click here.

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Jessica Brest

Jessica Brest is a digital journalist and assignment editor for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Jessica, click here.

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