The day Donald Trump was sworn in as president, this rocket was busy ditching Earth.
The rose gold-hued Atlas V lifted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 7:42 p.m. ET on Friday.
The rocket's payload — the Air Force's Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) GEO Flight 3 satellite — is designed to help detect missile launches worldwide.
The SBIRS mission is "considered one of the nation's highest priority space programs," according to the United Launch Alliance (ULA), which sent the rocket into space.
While the ULA launch and the presidential inauguration weren't related, it didn't stop people (including this reporter) from making jokes about the timing of the two events. Read more...More about Donald Trump, Space Exploration, United Launch Alliance, Rocket Launch, and Rockets