Encyclopedia Astronautica
Delta IV



delt4big.jpg
Delta IV Large
Credit: © Mark Wade
deltaall.jpg
Delta LV Family
From left: Thor-Delta, Delta A, Delta B, Delta E, Delta M, Delta 2000, Delta 6000, Delta 7000 Heavy, Delta 3, Delta IV, Delta Heavy.
Credit: © Mark Wade
American orbital launch vehicle. The Delta IV was the world's first all-Lox/LH2 launch vehicle and represented the only all-new-technology launch vehicle developed in the United States since the 1970's. It was the winner of the bulk of the USAF EELV orders and was based on the all-new RS-68-powered Lox/LH2 cryogenic Common Booster Core (CBC). This could be used with new Delta cryogenic upper stages powered by the RL10 engine but unrelated to previous Centaur upper stages. It could be flown without augmentation, or use 2-4 large GEM-60 solid rocket boosters. The heavy lift version used two core vehicles as a first stage, flanking the single core vehicle second stage.

The configuration of Delta IV vehicles was encoded as follows:

  • First digit: basic vehicle configuration: 4 = Delta-4 Lox/LH2 core
  • Second digit: Number of GEM-60 solid propellant strap-ons (0, 2, or 4).
  • Third digit: Second stage
    • 4 = Delta-4 Lox/LH2 cryogenic upper stage with 4 m diameter
    • 5 = Delta-4 Lox/LH2 cryogenic upper stage with 5 m diameter
  • Fourth digit: Third stage
    • 0 = No third stage
    • 3 = Star 37D / TE-364-3 solid propellant kick stage
    • 4 = Star 37E / TE-364-4 solid propellant kick stage
    • 5 = Star-48B / PAM-D solid propellant kick stage (often listed as '0' upper stage with a PAM-D due to the modular nature of the PAM configuration).
    • 6 = Star 37FM solid propellant kick stage
  • Optional letter after fourth digit: An 'H' here indicates a 'Heavy' configuration, indicating use of two strap-on Common Booster Cores (CBC) to supplement the CBC on the core stage.
  • Dash number: Payload fairing. For Delta II, this indicates the diameter of the fairing in feet. For Delta III or Delta IV, it indicates the length of the fairing in meters.

Success Rate: 100.00%. Launch data is: continuing.

Status: Active.
First Launch: 2002.11.20.
Last Launch: 2009.01.18.
Number: 8 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • DSP American military early warning satellite. 23 launches, 1970.11.06 (IMEWS 1) to 2007.11.11 (USA 176). An evolving series of satellites built by the United States to detect intercontinental ballistic missiles on launch. More...
  • DSCS III American military communications satellite. 15 launches, 1982.10.30 (DSCS III-01) to 2003.08.29 (USA 170). DSCS satellites provided secure voice and data communications for the US military. More...
  • HS 601 American communications satellite bus. First launch 1990.01.09. 3-axis unified ARC 22 N and one Marquardt 490 N bipropellant thrusters, Sun and Barnes Earth sensors and two 61 Nms 2-axis gimbaled momentum bias wheels. More...
  • Advanced Orion American military naval signals intelligence and reconnaisance satellite. Highly classified, operational, first launch 1995.05.14. More...
  • DMSP Block 5D-3 American earth weather satellite. 4 launches, 1999.12.12 (USA 147) to 2009-10-18. Military spacecraft similar in design to the civilian NOAA weather satellites. More...
  • Jumpseat-2 American military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. 2 launches, 2006.06.25 (USA 200) to 2008.03.13 (USA 200). More...

See also
  • Delta IV The Delta IV was the world's first all-Lox/LH2 launch vehicle and represented the only all-new-technology launch vehicle developed in the United States since the 1970's. It was the winner of the bulk of the USAF EELV orders and was based on the all-new RS-68-powered Lox/LH2 cryogenic Common Booster Core (CBC). This could be used with new Delta cryogenic upper stages powered by the RL10 engine but unrelated to previous Centaur upper stages. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Douglas American manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. Boeing Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach, CA, USA. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Isakowitz, Steven J, Hopkins, Joshua B, and Hopkins, Joseph P, International Reference to Space Launch Systems, AIAA, Washington DC, 2004.
  • NASA/GSFC Orbital Information Group Website, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Space-Launcher.com, Orbital Report News Agency. Web Address when accessed: here.

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