Vandenberg AFB Launch Complex 576
Launch Complex 576, also known as Area 576, is a group of rocket launch pads at Vandenberg Air Force Base. The pads at the complex were used from 1959 until 1971 to launch SM-65 Atlas missiles. The site was also known as Complex ABRES. Pads in Area 576 include 576-A-1,2,3, 576-B-1,2,3, 576-C, 576-D, 576-E, OSTF-1 and OSTF-2.
The first operational launch of an Atlas missile by the Strategic Air Command was conducted from 576-A-2 by the 576th Strategic Missile Squadron on September 9, 1959. It impacted 4,480 nautical miles (8,300 km) away, near Wake Island.
The first Atlas F launch at Vandenberg took place from 576-E on August 1, 1962. Orbital Sciences Corporation now launches their Taurus rockets from 576-E. 576-E is also a candidate site for launches of Kinetic Energy Interceptor boosters. The USAF and Missile Defense Agency anticipate a minimum of three KEI launches per year from 2009 to at least 2012.
- "Vandenberg ABRES". Encyclopedia Astronautica.
- "VANDENBERG AFB - HOME OF THE 576th STRATEGIC MISSILE SQUADRON". SiloWorld.
- "Vandenberg 576A2". Encyclopedia Astronautica.
- "ATLAS F". SiloWorld.
- Jim Kirkpatrick. "Vandenberg Air Force Base".
- Federal Register /Vol. 73, No. 245 / Friday, December 19, 2008 / Proposed Rules, page 77579.