X-37B Returns from First Space Flight

Great news in the world of secret space flight:

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – The U.S. Air Force’s first
unmanned re-entry spacecraft landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base at
1:16 a.m. PST today.

The X-37B, named Orbital Test Vehicle 1 (OTV-1), conducted on-orbit
experiments for more than 220 days during its maiden voyage.  It fired
its orbital maneuver engine in low-earth orbit to perform an
autonomous reentry before landing.

The X-37B is the newest and most advanced re-entry spacecraft. Managed
by the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (AFRCO), the X-37B program
performs risk reduction, experimentation and concept of operations
development for reusable space vehicle technologies.

“Today’s landing culminates a successful mission based on close
teamwork between the 30th Space Wing, Boeing and the Air Force Rapid
Capabilities Office,” said Lt Col Troy Giese, X-37B program manager
from the AFRCO. “We are very pleased that the program completed all
the on-orbit objectives for the first mission.”

OTV-1’s de-orbit and landing mark the transition from the on-orbit
demonstration phase to a refurbishment phase for the program.

The Air Force is preparing to launch the next X-37B, OTV-2, in Spring
2011 aboard an Atlas V booster.

Brian Webb
http://www.spacearchive.info

I wonder if the X-37B has enough delta V to make it to the ISS? If it did then there might be hope for more re-supply missions that don’t rely on the Russian Progress launches.

Posted: December 3rd, 2010
at 7:56am by John


Categories: Historic,Robots,Science,Space,Technology,To be used for Evil

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