VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -

A satellite designed to produce high-resolution images of Earth from space has been successfully launched from a military base on California's Central Coast.

The commercial satellite known as Worldview-3 was sent into space atop an Atlas 5 rocket on a clear day Wednesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base.

Worldview-3 belongs to Colorado-based DigitalGlobe and was built by Ball Aerospace. Lockheed Martin and the United Launch Alliance are also partners in the project.

DigitalGlobe says the satellite will be able to capture images of objects as small as 1 foot across, but government regulations prevent selling images with resolution finer than about 20 inches.

Vice President for Technology Neal Anderson said during a launch webcast that the satellite can shoot a picture of home plate at a baseball stadium.