AEHF-5 Ready for Launch

  • Published
  • SMC Public Affairs

The Air Force’s fifth Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellite, the culmination of a prominent acquisition effort championed by the nation’s launch and satellite procurer of choice, the USAF Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC), completed it’s roll out to Space Launch Complex-41 launch pad at 10:49 a.m. EDT today, here.

Launch of the AEHF-5 satellite aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V launch vehicle is set for Aug. 8, 2019, with the launch window opening at 05:44 a.m. EDT.  A live broadcast will begin 20 minutes before launch and webcast is available to be viewed at

To maximize satellite on-orbit capability, SMC ordered the Atlas V 551 for this mission, the most powerful Atlas rocket available.  This lift-off will mark the 10th Atlas V 551 launch and 80th Atlas V launch.

The SMC-procured AEHF is a joint-service satellite communications system providing survivable, global, secure, protected and jam-resistant communications for high-priority military ground, sea and air assets.  AEHF also provides protected satellite communications to our international partners Canada, United Kingdom, Netherlands and Australia.  The AEHF system is the follow-on to the Milstar system, augmenting, improving and expanding the DOD’s Military Satellite Communications (MILSATCOM) architecture.

The Production Corps, SMC’s Agile capabilities delivery arm, leads the AEHF team, and Air Force Space Command operates the AEHF system.  Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company is the AEHF prime contractor, and Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems is the payload developer and manufacturer. 

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