The new facilities at Cape Canaveral will be built on the site of the existing Launch Complex 41, currently used to launch Titan IV rockets. Final design will begin in the next few weeks and construction is expected to be completed in early 2001. The first Lockheed Martin EELV launch is planned for late 2001 from Cape Canaveral. The new facilities at Vandenberg are planned to be built on the site of the existing Space Launch Complex 3-West, formerly used to launch Atlas rockets. Construction at Vandenberg is scheduled to begin in late 1999.
"These modern facilities, combined with our new family of launch vehicles and innovative processing techniques, will enable us to increase the efficiency and reduce the costs of launch services we provide to the U.S. government and our commercial customers worldwide," said Dr. Raymond S. Colladay, Lockheed Martin Astronautics president.
Astronautics is developing the EELV in cooperation with the U.S, Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. The Air Force is committed to replacing the existing Delta, Atlas and Titan space launch vehicles with the EELV for use in launching a wide range of government and commercial payloads.
Lockheed Martin's EELV family of rockets features a number of common elements, including a Common Core Booster(TM) with the RD-180 rocket engine developed by the team of Pratt & Whitney and the Russian company NPO Energomash.