Launch Day Arrives for Space Test Program-3 Mission

STP-3 Atlas V
The United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket and the United States Space Force’s STP-3 mission sit on Space Launch Complex 41 (SLC-41) at Cape Canaveral at sunset. Photo Credit: United Launch Alliance

A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V 551 rocket stands at Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station (CCSFS) in Florida for this morning’s launch of the Department of Defense’s (DOD) Space Test Program 3 (STP-3) mission.

Lift off is scheduled for 4:04 a.m. EST, with a two-hour launch window. The mission, managed by the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), will launch the Space Test Program Satellite-6 (STPSat-6) spacecraft, which hosts NASA’s Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) and the NASA-U.S. Naval Research Laboratory Ultraviolet Spectro-Coronagraph (UVSC).

Meteorologists with the U.S. Space Force 45th Weather Squadron predict a greater than 90% chance of favorable weather for liftoff.

Join us here on the blog tomorrow morning for live launch updates – live coverage of the launch is scheduled to air on NASA Television, the agency’s website, and the NASA App beginning at 3:30 a.m. EST.

Learn more about this morning’s STP-3 launch by visiting the mission home page at To stay updated about LCRD and laser communications, visit:

Stay connected with the LCRD mission on social media:
Twitter: @NASA, @NASAGoddard, @NASALaserComm, @NASA_Technology, @NASASCaN
Facebook: NASA, NASAGoddard, NASA Technology, NASA Space Communications and Navigation
Instagram: NASA, NASAGoddard