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Final Titan 4 launches
Posted: Wed, Oct 19, 2005, 8:36 PM ET (0036 GMT)
Titan 4B launches on last mission (Lockheed Martin) A Titan 4B launched a classified payload on Wednesday, marking the final launch in the long history of the Titan launch vehicle family. The Titan 4B lifted off from SLC-4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California at 2:05 pm EDT (1805 GMT). Its payload, identified as only a "national security payload" for the National Reconnaissance Office, separated from the vehicle 11 and a half minutes after liftoff. Outside observers have speculated that the Titan's payload may be a new generation of reconnaissance satellites. The launch was the last for the Titan 4B, which is being retired in favor of the heaviest versions of the Atlas 5 and Delta 4 EELVs. The launch is also the last for the Titan family of boosters, which date back to the Titan ICBM program in the late 1950s.
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