|Bus||NOSS-3 or NOSS-4|
|Launch date||15 April 2011
|Carrier rocket||Atlas V 411 AV-027|
|Launch site||Vandenberg SLC-3E|
|Apoapsis||1,204 km (748 mi)|
|Periapsis||1,017 km (632 mi)|
USA-229, known before launch as NRO Launch 34 (NROL-34), is a pair of American signals intelligence satellites which were launched in 2011. They are operated by the United States National Reconnaissance Office.
Both satellites were deployed by a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 411 carrier rocket, which launched from Space Launch Complex 3E at the Vandenberg Air Force Base. The launch occurred at 04:24 UTC on 15 April 2011. The rocket placed the satellites into a low Earth orbit. By 04:29 UTC, official updates on the status of the spacecraft had been discontinued.
Whilst details of the satellites and their missions are officially classified, amateur observers have identified that the Atlas V deployed two satellites, one of which has officially been catalogued as debris. The two spacecraft have been identified as being a pair of third or fourth generation Naval Ocean Surveillance System satellites. Amateur observations have located the spacecraft in an orbit with a perigee of 1,025 kilometres (637 mi) and an apogee of 1,207 kilometres (750 mi), inclined at 64.4 degrees to the plane of the equator. Current generation NOSS satellites are always launched and operated in pairs, and are used to locate and track ships from the radio transmissions that they emit.
- Molczan, Ted (2011-04-21). "NROL-34: NOSS 3-5 elements". http://www.satobs.org/seesat.
- McDowell, Jonathan. "Issue 640". Jonathan's Space Report. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- Ray, Justin. "Mission Status Center". Atlas Mission Report. Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- Ted, Molczan (17 April 2011). "RE: NROL-34 - NOSS 3-5 pair spotted tonight from Austin, TX". SeeSat-L. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- Krebs, Gunter. "NOSS-3". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- Ray, Justin (18 April 2011). "Observers confirm identity of last week's Atlas payload". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
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