The Delta IV Heavy rocket doesn’t appear to be launching any time soon.
According to The United Launch Alliance, it announced on Saturday the “Delta IV Heavy carrying the NROL-71 mission launch date is under review.”
A new launch date and time will be provided pending the results of additional testing, the company stated.
“We continue to remedy the technical issues that caused the last scrub of the Delta IV Heavy, and are working with our partners, the National Reconnaissance Office and the U.S. Air Force, to ensure that we fly when it is safe to do so,” said Gary Wentz, vice president of Government and Commercial programs, “we understand that this is a high-priority mission for the nation’s warfighters and we take our commitment to safety and mission assurance seriously.”
A launch alert email stated it more bluntly, “The Delta IV Heavy launch has been delayed indefinitely. There is no new launch date.”
The next announced Vandenberg AFB rocket launch is a Falcon 9 on the morning of January 8. The Falcon is scheduled to lift off from south base at 07:48 PST and carry Iridum NEXT satellites 66-75 into orbit.
We continue to remedy the technical issues that caused the last scrub of the Delta IV Heavy, and are working with our partners, the @NatReconOfc @usairforce to ensure that we fly when it is safe to do so. https://t.co/wLoggeC9CA (2 of 2)
— ULA (@ulalaunch) January 5, 2019