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Keyword: spaceplane

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  • US Air Force Prepping Mysterious X-37B Space Plane for September Launch

    08/17/2017 1:24:05 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    Space.com ^ | August 17, 2017 06:58am ET | Leonard David
    The upcoming X-37B mission — which is known as Orbital Test Vehicle-5 (OTV-5) — will lift off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Shuttle look-alike The Air Force is known to own two reusable X-37B space planes, which were built by Boeing. The vehicles look like miniature versions of NASA’s now-retired space shuttle orbiter; each X-37B is 29 feet (8.8 meters) long and 9.6 feet (2.9 m) tall, and each has a wingspan of nearly 15 feet (4.6 m). The space drone has a payload bay about the size of a pickup truck bed that...
  • US Military Is Close to Selecting Builder for XS-1 Space Plane

    05/20/2017 4:50:35 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 16 replies
    space.com ^ | May 18, 2017 07:30am ET | Leonard David
    In Phase 1 of the XS-1 program, DARPA awarded prime contracts to three companies, each of which will work with a commercial launch provider: Boeing (working with Blue Origin), Masten Space Systems (working with XCOR Aerospace) and Northrop Grumman (working with Virgin Galactic). However, the Phase 2 contractor won't necessarily be chosen from the three Phase 1 participants, according to the Air Force Magazine report. The XS-1 space plane will consist of a reusable booster vehicle and an expendable upper stage. According to the DARPA website, the XS-1 program has four primary technical goals: + Fly 10 times in a...
  • Mysterious X-37B Military Space Plane to Fly Again Next Month

    04/25/2015 6:14:55 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 19 replies
    space.com ^ | Mike Wall,
    "The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) and the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (AFRCO) are investigating an experimental propulsion system on the X-37B on Mission 4," Capt. Chris Hoyler, an Air Force spokesman, told Space.com via email. "AFRCO will also host a number of advance materials onboard the X-37B for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to study the durability of various materials in the space environment," Hoyler added ... The Air Force owns two X-37B space planes, both of which were built by Boeing's Phantom Works division. The solar-powered spacecraft are about...
  • SpaceLiner: Europe-Australia, 90 minutes, Europe-US, one hour

    08/20/2015 1:29:36 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 7 replies
    phys.org ^ | 08-20-2015 | by Nancy Owano
    In aviation circles, the talk of the future involves phrases like "space planes" and "hypersonic atmospheric flight vehicles." A group presently in the spotlight is from Germany; they are carrying a roadmap for low-cost space access which involves calling upon the air passenger market for fast-travel flights. Welcome to the world of SpaceLiner, which, when fully developed, could have dramatic impact in global aerospace. The DLR Institute of Space Systems said this suborbital, hypersonic, winged passenger transport idea is under investigation at DLR-SART. (DLR is a German aerospace research agency and it evaluates complex systems of space flight. SART is...
  • The UK spaceplane aiming to go to a new level

    08/02/2009 3:40:21 PM PDT · by KevinDavis · 2 replies · 309+ views
    BBC News ^ | 07/30/09 | Jonathan Amos
    If there is one British space project that has the capacity to inspire at the moment then surely it is Skylon.
  • Space Plane Tech Could Power Hypersonic Aircraft for US Military

    08/19/2014 12:25:27 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 7 replies
    space.com ^ | August 18, 2014 07:00am ET | Rob Coppinger,
    Engine technology being developed for a British space plane could also find its way into hypersonic aircraft built by the U.S. military. The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory is studying hypersonic vehicles that would use the Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine (SABRE), which the English company Reaction Engines Ltd. is working on to power the Skylon space plane, AFRL officials said. "AFRL is formulating plans to look at advanced vehicle concepts based on Reaction Engine's heat-exchanger technology and SABRE engine concept," officials with AFRL, which is based in Ohio, told Space.com via email last month. ... SABRE burns hydrogen and oxygen....
  • Sabre engine could revolutionise space flight

    11/29/2012 9:54:12 AM PST · by the scotsman · 40 replies
    Engineering and Technology Magazine ^ | 28 November 2012 | Sofia Mitra-Thakur
    'A UK company which hopes to build a re-usable space plane has won an important endorsement from the European Space Agency (ESA) after completing key tests on its novel engine technology. Reaction Engines believes its novel Sabre engine, which would operate like a jet engine in the atmosphere and a rocket in space, could displace rockets for space access and transform air travel by bringing any destination on earth to no more than four hours away. That ambition was given a boost this week by ESA, which has acted as an independent auditor on the Sabre test programme. "ESA are...
  • UK Skylon spaceplane passes key review (from runway to orbit)

    05/24/2011 4:06:07 PM PDT · by decimon · 47 replies
    BBC ^ | May 24, 2011 | Jonathan Amos
    A revolutionary UK spaceplane concept has been boosted by the conclusions of an important technical review.The proposed Skylon vehicle would do the job of a big rocket but operate like an airliner, taking off and landing at a conventional runway. The European Space Agency's propulsion experts have assessed the details of the concept and found no showstoppers. They want the next phase of development to include a ground demonstration of its key innovation - its Sabre engine. This power unit is designed to breathe oxygen from the air in the early phases of flight - just like jet engines -...
  • British Space Plane Concept Gets Boost

    03/11/2009 8:28:54 PM PDT · by KevinDavis · 22 replies · 2,369+ views
    Space.com ^ | 03/11/09 | Jeremy Hsu
    Launching into orbit could become a little easier and cheaper, thanks to a futuristic space plane that looks like it might have flown straight out of a Star Wars film. The European Space Agency and British government have awarded $1 million euros ($1.28 million dollars) to Reaction Engines Limited (REL), a British aerospace company, as part of a multi-million dollar development program for an air-breathing rocket engine that could power the Skylon spaceplane. The unpiloted, reusable vehicle is designed to take off from an airstrip, deliver cargo into orbit and return to the same runway.
  • Scientology: church, cult or corporation?

    12/13/2013 12:02:05 AM PST · by Cincinatus' Wife · 13 replies
    Telegraph UK ^ | December 12, 2013 | Tom Rowley
    ...The five justices’ 84-point judgment was strewn with references to 19th-century parliamentary debates and semantic disputes, but their verdict on Wednesday afternoon was clear. The couple would now be free to marry in a Scientology chapel in London, surrounded by their families and the church’s volunteers...[SNIP] There are significant practical benefits, according to Linda Woodhead, a professor of religion at Lancaster University. “There are a lot of political and economic advantages in being categorised as a religion,” she says. “Equality legislation gives protection on the grounds of religion. And if you want to set up a free school, your application...
  • Air Force mystery plane set for next mission

    09/26/2012 5:06:06 PM PDT · by justlurking · 16 replies
    ABC News via Yahoooooo! ^ | 2012-09-26 | Taylor Hom
    The U.S. military's mysterious X-37B space plane is headed back into the great beyond to do… whatever it does up there. The X-37B is slated for its third launch in October, the Air Force said, but like its two orbital predecessors, the mission of the unmanned spacecraft remains shrouded in secrecy. The exact timing of the October spaceflight, dubbed Orbital Test Vechicle-3 or OTV-3, is also tentative. "We are on track for the launch of the X-37B to occur next month, but the exact date of the launch is dependent on a number of factors including range conditions and weather,"...
  • Air Force Will Continue to Launch Mysterious X-37B Space Plane

    03/22/2012 9:00:20 PM PDT · by U-238 · 23 replies · 3+ views
    National Defense Magazine ^ | 3/22/2012 | Stew Magnuson
    What payloads are aboard the Air Force’s X-37B space plane, which has been orbiting the Earth for more than a year, remains top secret. Gen. William L. Shelton, commander of Air Force Space Command, was peppered with questions about its purpose at a gathering of Washington, D.C.-based defense reporters March 22. He remained tight-lipped about the mystery spacecraft’s mission, but did say that the service has no intention of purchasing any more of the winged, reusable vehicles, which resemble a smaller version of NASA’s now returned space shuttle. “It is doing very well on orbit,” he said. “It has had...
  • U.S. Air Force space plane marks one year in orbit

    03/05/2012 7:05:31 PM PST · by U-238 · 6 replies
    Spaceflight Now ^ | 3/4/2012 | Stephen Clark
    The U.S. Air Force's second X-37B space plane marked one year in orbit Monday, continuing its clandestine mission more than 200 miles above Earth. The robotic spacecraft's purpose is secret, but Air Force officials acknowledge the vehicle is performing well one year after it blasted off on a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket on March 5, 2011. "We are very pleased with the results of the on-going X-37B experiments," said Lt. Col. Tom McIntyre, X-37B program director in the Air Force's Rapid Capabilities Office. "The X-37B program is setting the standard for a reusable space plane and, on this...
  • No landing date yet for Air Force's mystery craft

    11/29/2011 9:20:18 PM PST · by neverdem · 29 replies
    The Associated Press ^ | November 29, 2011 | NA
    VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (AP) — A secretive unmanned space plane is staying in orbit a little longer. The experimental Air Force craft has been circling Earth for about nine months. The X-37B orbital test vehicle was due to land in California this week, but the Air Force said Tuesday that the mission will be extended. A landing date has not been set...
  • Air Force to Launch 2nd Secret X-37B Space Plane Today After Delay

    03/05/2011 2:23:21 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 16 replies
    SPACE.com ^ | 05 March 2011 Time: 03:20 PM ET | Mike Wall,
    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...
  • Russians at work on military spaceplane

    02/02/2011 4:43:38 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 6 replies
    Flight Global ^ | 2/2/2011 | Dan Thisdell and Alexander Zudin
    Russian Space Forces researchers are working on an unmanned reusable spacecraft similar to the US Air Force's Boeing X-37 orbital test vehicle, the head of the armed forces unit dedicated to military space operations has revealed. Oleg Ostapenko, speaking just weeks after the end of the X-37B's maiden, 220-day mission, said: "Something has been done along these lines, but as to whether we will use it, only time will tell." A move by Russia to develop a reusable spaceplane harks back to the Soviet Union's Buran space shuttle project. Buran was similar in concept and size to NASA's Space Shuttle,...
  • EADS Astrium To Develop Spaceplane

    01/28/2011 12:26:07 AM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 2 replies
    Aviation Week and Space Technology ^ | 1/28/2011 | Leithen Francis
    EADS Astrium has disclosed that Singapore will be a partner in its suborbital spaceplane program. At the Global Space & Technology Convention in Singapore, EADS Astrium executives announced that Singapore will be building a small-scale demonstrator of the spaceplane and may be involved in developing parts for the commercial product. EADS Astrium is also hoping Singapore will ultimately have a fleet of its commercial spaceplanes stationed at Singapore’s Changi Airport. Christophe Chavagnac, EADS Astrium’s suborbital spaceplane chief engineer and program manager, says Singapore companies will be designing and building a small-scale demonstrator spaceplane used to test aerodynamics and glide capability....
  • Russian answer to U.S. reusable robotic spacecraft in the offing

    01/27/2011 11:50:23 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 3 replies
    RIA Novosti ^ | 1/28/2011 | RIA Novosti
    Russian researchers are working on an unmanned spacecraft similar to the U.S. Boeing X-37 Orbital Test Vehicle, Space Troops chief Oleg Ostapenko said on Thursday. He said, however, it was not clear as yet how it would be used. "Something has been done along these lines, but as to whether we will use it, only time will tell," Ostapenko said. The Boeing X-37, used for orbital spaceflight missions, has a length of over 29 ft (8.9 m) and features two angled tail fins. The spaceplane's first orbital mission was launched on April 22, 2010 with an Atlas V rocket.
  • AF's X-37B Historical Landing Advances Space Vehicle Technologies

    12/08/2010 9:06:47 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 7 replies
    ASDN News ^ | 12/8/2010 | ASDN News
    After 244 days in space since its launch April 22 from Cape Canaveral, Fla., the X-37B orbital test vehicle landing marks the Air Force's latest step in experimental test missions to improve the service's space capabilities, officials said here Dec. 6. The 11,000-pound OTV made an autonomous landing at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., Dec. 3 at 1:16 a.m., allowing the Air Force to begin evaluation of its functions as a satellite communications, weather and material technology asset, said Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space Programs Richard McKinney. "We're in a very serious and important business of...
  • X-37B Prepared For Expanded Orbital Test

    12/07/2010 1:09:44 AM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 1 replies
    Aviation Week and Space Technology ^ | 12/07/2010 | Guy Norris
    The U.S. Air Force says the second planned mission of the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV) will “expand the operating envelope” of the autonomous space vehicle, potentially increasing the orbital cross-range and capability of landing in stronger crosswinds. Richard McKinney, Air Force undersecretary for space programs, says the second test X-37B—OTV-2—is being prepared in Boeing’s California space facilities for transfer “soon” to Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla. From there it will be launched on an Atlas V in the March-April 2011 time period. Lt. Col. Troy Giese, X-37B program manager from the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (Afrco), which manages the...