No need to worry about that loud, fiery exploding noise in Florida last week -- that was the sound of us all becoming a little bit safer. An Atlas 5 rocket lifted off from Cape Canaveral on Saturday, carrying Lockheed Martin's Space-Based Infrared Systems (SBIRS) Geo-1. The spacecraft will be followed by three more satellites launched in the next five years, all totaling $17.6 billion. Ominously referred to as "persistent overhead surveillance," the $1.3 billion first piece of the SBIRS constellation missile defense system
is set to replace the antiquated Defense Support Program launched in 1970. It's a small price to pay to keep those darn space invaders out of our hair.