Spaceport Florida Launch Complex 36
|Launch site||CCAFS (1962-2010)
Spaceport Florida (2010—)
US Air Force
|Min / max
|28° - 57°|
|(S)LC-36A launch history|
|First launch||18 May 1962
Atlas LV-3C Centaur-A AC-1
|Last launch||31 August 2004
Atlas IIAS / NROL-1
|(S)LC-36B launch history|
|First launch||11 August 1965
Atlas LV-3C Centaur-D / Surveyor D-2
|Last launch||3 February 2005
Atlas III / NROL-23
Launch Complex 36 (LC-36), known as Space Launch Complex 36 (SLC-36) from 1997 to 2010, is a launch complex at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Brevard County, Florida. Now operated under license by Space Florida, it was used for Atlas launches from 1962 until 2005.
Historically, the complex consisted of two launch pads, SLC-36A and SLC-36B, and was the launch site for the Pioneer, Surveyor, and Mariner probes in the 1960s and 1970s. There were a total of 69 and 76 launches from pads 36A and 36B, respectively, while the US government operated the launch complex in the first five decades of spaceflight.
LC-36A was the scene of the biggest on-pad explosion in Cape history when Atlas-Centaur AC-5 fell back onto the pad on March 2, 1965. The accident spurred NASA to complete work on LC-36B which had been abandoned when it was 90% finished.
In 2008, Aviation Week magazine reported that the U.S. Air Force committed to lease Launch Complex 36 to Space Florida for future use by the Athena III launch system, but that program had not moved forward as late as 2013.
2006 tower demolition
The legacy Atlas-Centaur umbilical towers of both pads were demolished in 2006. The mobile service towers were both demolished in controlled explosions on June 16, 2007. Tower B was demolished at 13:59 GMT (09:59 EDT) and tower A followed twelve minutes later at 14:11 (10:11 EDT).
Blue Origin lease
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- Athena rising?, Dwayne Day, The Space Review, February 11, 2013
- "Air Force licenses two launch complexes for commercial use". Retrieved March 15, 2010.
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- Clark, Stephen (24 January 2015). "Former Atlas launch pad gets a new tenant". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
- Coledan, Stefano S. (February 28, 2006). "Slowly Crumbling, NASA Landmarks May Face the Bulldozer". The New York Times (Cape Canaveral: The New York Times). Retrieved January 25, 2010.
- Warren, Ken (June 21, 2007). "Historic complex 36 towers toppled". Air Force (Patrick Air Force Base: 45th SW Public Affairs). Retrieved January 25, 2010.
- Cofield, Calla (15 September 2015). "Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin Will Launch Rockets and Spaceships from Florida". Space.com. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
- Foust, Jeff (2015-09-15). "Bezos Not Concerned About Competition, Possible ULA Sale". Space News. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Jeff Bezos plans to boost humans into space from Cape Canaveral, CBS News, accessed 2015-09-17.
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