Skip to comments.Air Force to Launch 2nd Secret X-37B Space Plane Today After Delay
Posted on 03/05/2011 2:23:21 PM PST by BenLurkin
The U.S. Air Force will try to launch its second secretive X-37B space plane from Florida again today (March 5), after bad weather foiled the first attempt yesterday.
The unmanned X-37B mini-shuttle which is known as Orbital Test Vehicle 2, or OTV-2 is now slated to launch at 5:46 p.m. EST (2246 GMT) today from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The reusable space plane will ride to orbit atop an Atlas 5 rocket to begin its mysterious mission, if the weather allows.
Two launch attempts were thwarted yesterday due to high winds and thick cumulus clouds. The latter posed an unacceptable lightning risk, according to launch provider United Launch Alliance (ULA), which is overseeing launch preparations.
The forecast for today doesn't look much better. On Friday afternoon, ULA officials said there's a 70 percent chance bad weather will delay today's launch try.
Launch crews also had to replace a faulty piece of equipment needed for today's launch attempt, forcing Air Force officials to skip a planned 4:09 p.m. EST (2109 GMT) launch attempt one of two flight opportunities for today, ULA officials said. [Photos: First Flight of the X-37B Space Plane]
If the X-37B space plane does not launch today, another attempt is possible on Monday (March 7). The Air Force would stand down on Sunday to give launch crews time to rest, ULA officials said in a statement today. If the lousy weather persists, more significant delays could ensue.
ULA officials said the current launch window closes Monday to make way for NASA's space shuttle Discovery. Discovery is slated to land at nearby Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday (March 9), closing out its final mission ahead of the shuttle program's retirement later this year.
(Excerpt) Read more at space.com ...
Some secret. On the other hand I love it when they put that ‘x’ in there. It’s so B-movie.
One of the NASA Astro-naughts at the space station going to test drive?
At 5:46 I went out in my front yard and watched it go in to space.
Could see the rocket, fire and exhaust from 10 miles west of Port St. Lucie, about 90 miles south of the cape.
It looks like it has a reservoir tip
Which way was it headed? NE, SE or E?
OK, so there are people in the know on this site. What do you guys think this is?
I wonder if it is a test of artificial intelligence — the whole plane is robotic. Could that be the break through?
“I wonder if it is a test of artificial intelligence the whole plane is robotic. Could that be the break through?”
Whatever we see, they’re probably 20 years ahead of that.
I just love Audra in their Yoga X videos.
And yes, "Ab ripper X. I hate it...but I love it."
Interesting shot Jack,
When they shoot off a shuttle it does go one way or another,
This one seemed to go nearly straight up.
It had a specific orbital inclination it was sent on. Here’s a great video of the launch. If you watch it you can see near the end of the video how much it has leaned over in the direction of travel.
I’m sure people will be following it just like the last one trying to keep up with where it is.
Way cool video.
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