Press Release

United Launch Alliance Commemorates Decade of Successful Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle Missions

By SpaceRef Editor
September 21, 2012
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Commercially Developed Atlas V and Delta IV Deliver More Than 50 Critical Payloads with 100 Percent Mission Success

Centennial, Colo. (Sept. 21, 2012) – United Launch Alliance (ULA) is commemorating a decade of Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) missions, in which the Atlas V and Delta IV successfully delivered more than 50 critical capabilities to orbit for the U.S. Air Force, National Reconnaissance Office, NASA and commercial users around the world.

The EELV program was established by the United States Air Force to provide assured access to space for Department of Defense and other government payloads. The commercially developed EELVs support the full range of government mission requirements, while delivering on schedule and providing a 33 percent cost savings over the heritage Atlas, Delta and Titan IV launch systems.

“For more than 50 years, Atlas and Delta launch vehicles have supported America’s dominance in space, launching weather, communications and national security missions that protect and improve life on Earth, as well as science and exploration missions that improve our understanding of the universe,” said Michel Gass, ULA president and CEO. “ULA is so very proud to serve our customers and is truly humbled by the trust they place in us by allowing us to put their critical and most valuable assets of our nation into space.”

“Congratulations to the entire joint EELV team on the 10th anniversary of the program and achievement of 50 plus successful launch missions,” said Roger S. Correll, Air Force Program Executive Officer, Space Launch. “The reliable performance of EELV is a critical enabler of our war-fighting and national security intelligence missions. Each and every day soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and intelligence operators rely on the satellite capabilities EELV enables. We look forward to continued performance excellence as EELV maintains support to National Security Space.” The commercially developed Atlas V and Delta IV are the only fully certified launch vehicles capable of supporting the full range of government launch requirements.

“We are thankful to the founders of the EELV program who helped set us on this course to deliver the improved reliability and operational flexibility at a significantly lower cost all while maintaining an unprecedented level of mission success,” said Gass.

“Congratulations to the EELV and ULA teams on the 10th anniversary of EELV,” said Betty Sapp, director, National Reconnaissance Office. “The reliable performance of EELV is a significant enabler of our national security mission. We look forward to sustained excellent performance as EELV continues to support the Intelligence Community and Department of Defense.” Since the first EELV launch in 2002, EELV has delivered extraordinary capabilities for the nation. Atlas V has launched 33 times and Delta IV has launched 20 times, delivering nine commercial payloads, 10 NASA spacecraft and 34 national security satellites.

“We are very proud of the manufacturing capacity we’ve established to build and deliver any quantity of launch capabilities the government needs to satisfy its requirements,” said Gass. “We are committed to continuously innovate and improve our products and services to maintain the highest standards of reliability while continuing to lower cost, achieving maximum value for the taxpayer.”

Currently, ULA is on track to complete its most aggressive EELV launch campaign to date with 11 launches this year, 12 launches scheduled in 2013 and 15 launches in 2014 from five operational launch pads.

ULA program management, engineering, test and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver, Colo. Manufacturing, assembly and integration operations are located at Decatur, Ala., and Harlingen, Texas. Launch operations are located at Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., and Vandenberg AFB, Calif. For more information on ULA, visit the ULA website at, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321). Join the conversation at and

SpaceRef staff editor.