A Titan 2 missile designed to launch a nuclear warhead soared on its maiden flight as a space rocket early Monday, carrying what an expert said likely was a set of Navy spy satellites.

The 103-foot liquid-fueled booster, bearing what the Air Force described only as a classified payload, lifted off at 2:25 a.m. from this sprawling coastal military base 140 miles northwest of Los Angeles, said Capt. Norma Payne.The missile took off in a fog-shrouded sky with a deep-throated roar that lasted three to five minutes.