The West Coast's first Delta IV Heavy sits on a launch pad with a National Reconnaissance Office payload at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. Photo by United Launch Alliance
A Delta IV Heavy carrying a national security satellite successfully lifted off from California on Thursday. It was the largest rocket ever launched from the U.S.'s West Coast.
The 235-foot-tall rocket built by United Launch Alliance launched 1:10 p.m. PST from Vandenberg Air Force Base's Space Launch Complex-6.
"This launch marks a significant milestone in our nation's space capability," said Lt. Col. Brady Hauboldt, launch director, in a statement Tuesday. "We've really restored a national capability for heavy lift on the Western Range, something we have not had since the last of the Titan IV-Bs flew out of Vandenberg."
Prior to the launch, Vandenberg spent $100 million over three years to upgrade Space Launch Complex-6.
This was the first Delta IV Heavy launch from Vandenberg and the fifth in the program's history. The first launch was in 2004 in Cape Canaveral, Fla.
A live webcast of the launch was streamed on the company's website.
Reach reporter Len Ly here. Follow her on Twitter here.