Keyword: x37b

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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...
  • Here’s Everything We Know About The Mysterious Air Force Plane That Just Landed, 2 Years In Space

    05/08/2017 10:28:21 AM PDT · by blam · 142 replies
    Business Insider ^ | 5-8-2017 | Christopher Woody
    The US military's X-37B space plane landed at NASA's Kennedy Space Center on Sunday, ending its record-breaking 718-day orbit with a sonic boom during its first landing in Florida. The US Air Force has two X-37B Orbital Test Vehicles, which it calls its newest and most advanced reentry spacecraft. At 29 feet long and with a 14-foot wingspan, the planes are about one-quarter of the size of NASA's now retired space shuttles and have a cargo bay about the size of a pick-up truck's. The first X-37 program started in 1999, and the X-37B first flew in April 2010,...
  • Is the US Air Force's X-37B space plane finally set to land after secret two year mission?

    02/17/2017 6:33:16 AM PST · by C19fan · 17 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | February 16, 2017 | Mark Prigg
    One of the most mysterious craft ever to be flown by the US military has been in orbit for almost two years. The X-37B space plane, an experimental program run by the Air Force, launched atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket on May 20, 2015. Now, experts claim it may be about to finally return to Earth - almost two years later.
  • Live coverage: Atlas 5 set for X-37B spaceplane launch today (8:05 a.m. PDT/11:05 a.m. EDT)

    05/20/2015 7:22:45 AM PDT · by Jack Hydrazine · 30 replies
    SpaceFlightNow.com ^ | 20MAY2015 | Staff Writer
    The countdown is beginning for today’s launch of the Atlas 5 rocket to haul the Air Force’s X-37B reusable spaceplane back into orbit. Clocks are picking up the seven-hour sequence of work that will prepare the booster, payload and ground systems for blastoff at 11:05 a.m. EDT (1505 GMT). Soon the launch team will begin powering up the rocket to commence standard pre-flight tests. Over the subsequent few hours, final preps for the Centaur's liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen systems will be performed, along with a test of the rocket's guidance system and the first stage propulsion and hydraulic preps,...
  • Secret space plane, solar sail and CubeSats launching Wednesday

    05/19/2015 10:08:53 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 7 replies
    CNN ^ | Amanda Barnett
    How much can you pack on top of one rocket? A United Launch Alliance Atlas V is carrying up the U.S. Air Force's so-called secret space plane, The Planetary Society's solar sail, and several CubeSats, or tiny satellites. The launch window is Wednesday from 10:45 a.m. ET and 2:45 p.m. ET at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. You can watch it on a webcast starting at 10:45 a.m. ET. The Air Force space plane is actually called the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle. This is the fourth mission for the plane. It looks like a small space shuttle, but...
  • 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...
  • US Air Force's Secret X37-B Space Plane Lands After 2 Year Mission

    10/17/2014 8:57:38 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 29 replies
    ABC News ^ | October 17, 2014 | Alyssa Newcomb and Luis Martinez
    The Air Force's secret mini-shuttle has finally returned to earth after spending nearly two years on a classified mission in space, military officials said today. The X37-B space plane touched down this morning at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California after spending a staggering 674 days aloft. One of the few things known about the space plane's classified missions is that it can stay in orbit for extended periods of time. Measuring 29 feet in length and having a 15-foot wingspan, the unmanned re-usable orbital test vehicle looks like a miniature version of NASA's now retired space shuttles. Like the...
  • Secretive X-37B Military Space Plane Could Land in California Tuesday

    10/13/2014 12:30:57 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 8 replies
    space.com ^ | October 12, 2014 08:44am ET | Tariq Malik,
    The robotic X-37B space plane, also known as the Orbital Test Vehicle, will land at the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, where Air Force officials are gearing up for its return. As of today (Oct. 12), the X-37B mini-shuttle has been in orbit since December 2012 and racked up a record-shattering 671 days in space. ... The Air Force has two X-37B space planes in its fleet and has been flying them on secret missions since 2010. But the exact purpose of those flights have been shrouded in secrecy. The mission in orbit now, called Orbital Test Vehicle 3...
  • US Air Force's Mysterious X-37B Space Plane Passes 500 Days in Orbit

    04/24/2014 9:19:06 AM PDT · by lbryce · 53 replies
    Space.com ^ | Aril 24, 2014 | Mike Wall, Senior Writer
    An unmanned military space plane has achieved a major longevity milestone, zipping around Earth for 500 days on a clandestine mission for the United States government. The U.S. Air Force's X-37B space plane launched on its third and latest mission on Dec. 11, 2012. As of today (April 24), the vehicle has been aloft for 500 days — far longer than its officially stated maximum orbital lifetime of 270 days. "Clearly, and understandably, the Air Force initially set the expected parameters [of the X-37B] conservatively, not really knowing what it could do until it was tested — which is what...
  • Is secret USAF robot plane X37B a warrior or a workhorse?

    07/04/2012 12:50:13 PM PDT · by Renfield · 23 replies
    Digital Journal ^ | 6-6-2012 | Paul Wallis
    <p>Sydney - A robot US space plane, X37B, has just completed a record feat of endurance, a whole year in space. This rather evasively publicized major achievement is a first for any kind of reusable spacecraft.</p> <p>It’s also a reassuring achievement at a time when many commentators (me for one) were wondering if the US was playing with a full deck on its space program capabilities. The apparently blasé decommissioning of the space shuttles, given the very high reliance of the US military on space infrastructure like spy satellites, etc. was looking very much like an unbelievably stupid own goal.</p>
  • [M]mysterious space plane to land after a YEAR in orbit - and no one knows what it did up there

    06/04/2012 6:03:18 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 95 replies
    dailymailuk ^ | : 09:12 EST, 4 June 2012 | Rob Waugh
    The U.S Air Force’s highly secret unmanned space plane will land in June - ending a year-long mission in orbit. The experimental Boeing X37-B has been circling Earth at 17,000 miles per hour and was due to land in California in December. It is now expected to land in mid to late June. At launch, the space plane was accompanied by staff in biohazard suits, leading to speculation that there were radioactive components on board. The men and women of Team Vandenberg are ready to execute safe landing operations anytime and at a moment's notice,' said Colonel Nina Armagno of...
  • 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 launches space plane X-37B one day after delay

    03/07/2011 7:17:21 PM PST · by neverdem · 21 replies
    Washington Post ^ | March 6, 2011 | The Associated Press
    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- The Air Force has launched a second experimental space plane that resembles a small shuttle. An Atlas 5 rocket blasted off with the unmanned space plane Saturday afternoon from Cape Canaveral. Air Force officials aren't saying much about the X-37B orbital test vehicle. It's the second of its type to be launched. The first rocketed into orbit last spring. It landed in California in December following a 270-day mission. The X-37B is 29 feet long with a wing span of 15 feet...
  • 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...
  • Was Laughner Mocking The Columbia Disaster And Threatening The X-37B In Flag Burning Message?

    01/17/2011 7:01:21 AM PST · by ExxonPatrolUs · 8 replies
    The Internets ^ | 1-17-2011 | Self
    I’m pretty sure Jared Lee Laughner was ranting about the X-37B in the flag burning video under YouTube channel Starhitshnoz. Jared: “There's a new bird on my right shoulder. The beak is two feet and lime green. The rarest bird on earth, there's no feathers, but small grey scales all over the body. It's with one large red eye with a light blue iris. The bird feet are the same as a woodpecker. This new bird and there's only one, the gender is not female or male. The wings of this bird are beautiful; 3 feet wide with the shape...
  • 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...
  • USAF welcomes home X-37B space plane

    12/07/2010 12:46:29 AM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 15 replies
    Flight Global ^ | 12/6/2010 | Gayle Putrich
    The U.S. Air Force is evaluating the performance and condition of the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV-1), the reusable space plane that lifted off in April and remains the subject of much international speculation. The unmanned spacecraft landed at 1:16 a.m. Pacific Time on 3 December at Vandenberg AFB, in California after 224 days and nine hours in space. Though the service is not discussing specifics about OTV-1's classified payload, air force insists the focus of the maiden flight was the aircraft, not the payload or even potential payloads. "Our ability to launch it and our ability to operate it...
  • Mystery Space Plane Coming Home, Still No Clue What it Does

    12/01/2010 8:42:50 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 29 replies · 2+ views
    Defense Tech ^ | 12/1/2010 | Defense Tech
    So, the world’s most mysterious UAV is set to return to Earth after spending nearly eight months in space where it did lord only knows what. Courtesy of the LA Times: The X-37, an unmanned spacecraft that resembles a miniature version of the space shuttle, is set to land at Vandenberg Air Force Base as early as this week — more than seven months after it was launched into orbit. The Air Force, which has been developing the X-37 pilotless space plane, has kept the ultimate purpose of the program hush-hush. It was launched April 22 from Cape Canaveral, Fla....
  • Boeing-built X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle Successfully Completes 1st Flight

    12/03/2010 5:10:12 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 16 replies
    Boeing ^ | 12/3/2010 | Boeing
    Boeing today announced the successful de-orbit and landing of the Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV), also known as the X-37B, for the U.S. Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO). The X-37B, shown here in a photo from before its launch, landed at 1:16 a.m. Pacific time today, concluding its more than 220-day experimental test mission. It was launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., on April 22.