- Sputnik International
Get the latest news from around the world, live coverage, off-beat stories, features and analysis.

Reusable Rocket Takes US Air Force’s Mysterious X-37B Space Shuttle Into Orbit

© SpaceX / Falcon takes secretive shuttle to space
Falcon takes secretive shuttle to space - Sputnik International
Hurricane Irma may be closing in on Florida by the hour, but that didn’t stop the US Air Force and SpaceX from sending a mysterious shuttle into space on Thursday afternoon.

Hurricane Irma may be closing in on Florida by the hour, but that didn’t stop the US Air Force and SpaceX from sending a mysterious shuttle into space on Thursday afternoon.

An unmanned Falcon rocket took off from the Kennedy Space Center in Brevard County, Florida, on Thursday afternoon to bring the X-37B shuttle into orbit. US officials have never publicly specified what business the X-37B is engaged in while it’s circling the Earth but it has been logging missions since 2010.

The September 7 launch was SpaceX’s first run at sending the X-37B to Earth’s perimeter. 

SpaceX Launch to ISS - Sputnik International
Science & Tech
WATCH: SpaceX’s Dragon Spacecraft Lifts Off for ISS Resupply Mission

Previously, Lockheed Martin’s Atlas rockets brought the Boeing vehicle into space.

The USAF operates just two of the “orbital test vehicles,” OTV-1 and OTV-2. The two manless vehicles have spent a combined 5.5 years orbiting in space.

“Boeing’s commitment to space-based unmanned vehicle technology spans a decade and includes support to the Air Force Research Lab’s X-40 program, NASA’s X-37 program, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s X-37 Approach, Landing and Test Vehicle program,” a 2012 Boeing announcement reads.

SpaceX showed the first few minutes of the secretive space shuttle’s liftoff before cutting the feed in accordance with USAF requests.



To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала