No landing date yet for Air Force's mystery craft

November 29, 2011

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.

The plane resembles a mini and is the second to fly in space. The first one landed itself last December at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California after more than seven months in orbit.

The Air Force has said the second mission was to further test the craft, but the ultimate purpose has largely remained a mystery.

Explore further: Air Force launches space plane 1 day after delay

0 shares

Related Stories

Air Force: winged robotic spacecraft launched

April 23, 2010

(AP) -- An unmanned Air Force space plane resembling a small space shuttle has been launched on its maiden voyage into orbit, carried aloft aboard an Atlas 5 rocket Thursday evening, the service announced.

Air Force and ULA to launch second X-37B

February 9, 2011

From all appearances the first flight of the U.S. Air Force’s secretive X-37B space plane was a complete success. As such, the Air Force is planning to launch a second Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV) on March 4 from Cape ...

Recommended for you

The evolution of massive galaxy clusters

January 20, 2017

Galaxy clusters have long been recognized as important laboratories for the study of galaxy formation and evolution. The advent of the new generation of millimeter and submillimeter wave survey telescopes, like the South ...

Image: Wavemaker moon Daphnis

January 20, 2017

The wavemaker moon, Daphnis, is featured in this view, taken as NASA's Cassini spacecraft made one of its ring-grazing passes over the outer edges of Saturn's rings on Jan. 16, 2017. This is the closest view of the small ...

Astronomers search for signs of life on Wolf 1061 exoplanet

January 19, 2017

Is there anybody out there? The question of whether Earthlings are alone in the universe has puzzled everyone from biologists and physicists to philosophers and filmmakers. It's also the driving force behind San Francisco ...

4 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Skepticus
5 / 5 (4) Nov 29, 2011
The delay is due to the current effort to capture the Phobos-Grunt spacecraft :-)
Nerdyguy
not rated yet Nov 30, 2011
The delay is due to the current effort to capture the Phobos-Grunt spacecraft :-)


lol, my guess was that it was really dead in space, like the Russian probe. Easier to keep it mysterious than admit the thing flopped.
bluehigh
1 / 5 (8) Nov 30, 2011
Another Nerdyguy guess that shows the only thing dead is the rotting goo in his over-sized skull.

Crazy_council
1 / 5 (1) Nov 30, 2011
The Air Force has said the second mission was to further test the craft, but the ultimate purpose has largely remained a mystery.


whats the bets they have it pointed towards Iran.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.