Space: September 16, 2000


Boeing launched a Delta-III heavy-lift booster on 23 August. The launch was the first success after two failures; Boeing had to conduct it without a paying customer to prove that the missile design was now workable. Delta-III is the largest privately-funded booster in history, and includes significant French and Japanese equipment. Boeing has orders for 18 Delta-IIIs; 11 for Hughes, five for Loral, and two for Skybridge. Delta-III will be replaced by the Delta-IV, which will begin launching satellites well before the last Delta-III is launched.--Stephen V Cole 


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