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In Brief

Atlas 5 Rocket Launches Clandestine US Spy Satellite

A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket carrying the NROL-33 satellite launches into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on May 22, 2014. The mission will deliver a classified payload into orbit for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Offi
A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket carrying the NROL-33 satellite launches into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on May 22, 2014. The mission will deliver a classified payload into orbit for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office. (Image credit: United Launch Alliance)

Editor's Update for 9:17 a.m. ET: Today's Atlas 5 launch sucessfully lifted off at 9:09 a.m. EDT from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and United Launch Alliance has stopped its video feed. A wrap story on the event will be posted shortly. Launch Photos:  Atlas 5 Rocket Blasts Off with Secret NROL-33 Satellite (Photos )

An unmanned Atlas 5 rocket will launch a classified spy satellite payload for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office at 9:09 a.m. EDT (1409GMT) from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and you could watch it live courtesy of Spaceflight Now.

The United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket will launch the NROL-33 satellite into orbit from Launch Complex-41 in Cape Canaveral. ULA will webcast live views of the Atlas 5 launch beginning at 8:45 a.m. EDT (1245 GMT).

The launch posted for the NROL-33 spy satellite mission for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office. The mission will launch on an Atlas 5 rocket on May 22, 2014. (Image credit: United Launch Alliance)

Space.com partner Spaceflight Now has a detailed preview of today's launch, which includes the controversy over the Atlas 5's Russian-built RD-180 rocket engines. The Russian RD-180 has made headlines recently due to the souring of U.S.-Russian diplomatic relations over the crises in Ukraine.

Spaceflight Now will provide live minute-by-minute updates on today's launch via its Mission Status Center, which will also include a live webcast.

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Tariq Malik
Tariq Malik

Tariq is the Editor-in-Chief of Space.com and joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and staff writer, and later as an editor. He covers human spaceflight, exploration and space science, as well as skywatching and entertainment. He became Space.com's Managing Editor in 2009 and Editor-in-Chief in 2019. Before joining Space.com, Tariq was a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering education and city beats in La Habra, Fullerton and Huntington Beach. He is also an Eagle Scout (yes, he has the Space Exploration merit badge) and went to Space Camp four times as a kid and a fifth time as an adult. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University. To see his latest project, you can follow Tariq on Twitter.