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ULA postpones launch of missile detection satellite

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket is prepared to launch the fifth Space Based Infrared System Geosynchronous Satellite (SBIRS GEO) for the U.S. Space Force at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station on Tuesday. Photo by Joe Marino/UPI
A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket is prepared to launch the fifth Space Based Infrared System Geosynchronous Satellite (SBIRS GEO) for the U.S. Space Force at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station on Tuesday. Photo by Joe Marino/UPI | License Photo

ORLANDO, Fla., May 17 (UPI) -- United Launch Alliance postponed the launch of a missile-warning satellite for the U.S. Space Force from Florida on Monday afternoon.

Liftoff of the Atlas V rocket had been planned at 1:35 p.m. EDT from Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, but the company posted on Twitter that it was troubleshooting an issue with liquid oxygen supply systems.

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ULA also had announced a brief delay in the launch time Monday due to an object in space above the pad.

Another attempt is now planned at 1:31 p.m. EDT Tuesday, according to ULA.

"Launch Director Steve Huff has announced that we will not continue with countdown operations today," the company tweeted a little over an hour before Monday's targeted launch time.

The weather forecast for Tuesday's attempt includes a 20% chance of cumulus clouds causing a delay, according to the Space Force.

The satellite, known as SBIRS GEO 5, is the fifth in a series of spacecraft that use infrared sensors to detect missile launches around the world, according to the Space Force.

Built by Lockheed Martin, it is the first of the SBIRS GEO series to fly on an upgraded platform that provides better anti-jamming capability and more power than previous such satellites, according to ULA's mission profile.

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