Want to watch a rocket launch live? The gantry at Vandenberg Air Force Base Space Launch Complex 3 has been pulled back to reveal the United Launch Alliance Atlas V 401 rocket and the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM) spacecraft. Weather is forecast to be favorable for launch, which is targeted for 1:02 p.m. EST at the beginning of a 48-minute launch window. This is the eighth Landsat satellite to be put into space by the program.
LDCM is a collaboration between NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The Landsat program has been providing uninterrupted imagery of Earth since the first Landsat in 1972. About three months after liftoff, USGS will take control and the spacecraft will be renamed Landsat 8. Once on station 438 miles above Earth, LDCM will orbit every 99 minutes and image the entire Earth every 16 days. You can watch the launch live below!