Vandenberg launches rocket with secret payload
December 6, 2013
A rocket with a secret payload launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base late Thursday night. [NBC 13]
The 19-story-tall Atlas V rocket launched around 11:15 p.m. Thursday and headed toward low-Earth orbit.
It is unknown what is onboard, but the Atlas V is carrying a payload for the National Reconnaissance Office, which operates U.S. intelligence gathering satellites.
Cold weather threatened the launch, but the rocket took off successfully within its launch window.
Atlas V has launched a total of 77 times from Vandenberg and Cape Canaveral, Florida. Thursday marked the second time this year that it has taken off from a West Coast location.