First Minotaur IV Mission from Kodiak

The Air Force and its industry partners have successfully launched a series of scientific payloads into space from Kodiak Island, Alaska, aboard a Minotaur IV booster. The rocket carried seven small satellites with 16 total science experiments for the Air Force, NASA, several universities, and other organizations. The mission represented many firsts, including the inaugural Minotaur IV launch from Kodiak and the first use of a special propulsion system to deliver payloads into two different orbits, the Associated Press reported (via the Anchorage Daily News). Among the satellites carried aloft on Nov. 19 was the Air Force Academy’s FalconSAT-5, which class of 2010 cadets designed, built, and tested. FalconSAT-5 carries experiments to study Earth’s ionosphere and its impact on radio-frequency communications. (For background on mission, see Los Angeles release) (See also Colorado Springs release)