salttee
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X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Sun May 07, 2017 5:58 pm

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Dutchy
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Sun May 07, 2017 6:25 pm

Yes, the main question is, what is it? And what does it do up there?
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JetBuddy
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Mon May 08, 2017 2:36 pm

Dutchy wrote:
Yes, the main question is, what is it? And what does it do up there?


That's what I'm wondering too. We know some things, but I don't know if it's accurate. 717 days in space is a lot. I wonder what the payload was.
 
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Dutchy
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Mon May 08, 2017 2:42 pm

JetBuddy wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
Yes, the main question is, what is it? And what does it do up there?


That's what I'm wondering too. We know some things, but I don't know if it's accurate. 717 days in space is a lot. I wonder what the payload was.


Probably some kind of surveillance, but then again why not use a satellite.
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Channex757
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Mon May 08, 2017 3:16 pm

Dutchy wrote:
JetBuddy wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
Yes, the main question is, what is it? And what does it do up there?


That's what I'm wondering too. We know some things, but I don't know if it's accurate. 717 days in space is a lot. I wonder what the payload was.


Probably some kind of surveillance, but then again why not use a satellite.

It's so much more flexible than a static device. If it can be engineered right, this spaceplane could be launched at relatively short notice and put where it's needed quickly. On top of that it can move about, which most space hardware either cannot or can only do so rarely due to fuel load.

Lots of potential things this could be doing, and there must also be potential for it in the more civilian side of things. I'm thinking of the way the systems and propulsion seem to work well even after being cold and radiation soaked for long duration missions. it also is a testbed for autonomous software that might find its way into space vehicles down the line.
 
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readytotaxi
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Mon May 08, 2017 5:27 pm

This device clearly offers the US more flexability than a satellite, we will never get to know what it did or does.
More info here. http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/3 ... s-in-orbit
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tommy1808
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Tue May 09, 2017 4:33 pm

Dutchy wrote:
JetBuddy wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
Yes, the main question is, what is it? And what does it do up there?


That's what I'm wondering too. We know some things, but I don't know if it's accurate. 717 days in space is a lot. I wonder what the payload was.


Probably some kind of surveillance, but then again why not use a satellite.


Because that is hard to bring back. Having a state of the art CCD or CMOS sensor in space for two years and bring it back and putting it under the microscope is probably a good way to optimize design and production processes, since you not just see the level of damage (in the data), but also how exactly it was degraded.
Technology testbed and flying proving ground would be my guess. You can also bring up dummy satellite parts, try directed energy weapons on those, close the bay doors and study the weapons effects up close on earth.

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Tugger
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Re: X37B Lands at Kennedy after 717 days aloft

Fri May 12, 2017 2:15 pm

readytotaxi wrote:
This device clearly offers the US more flexability than a satellite, we will never get to know what it did or does.

But it is tracked by hobbyists and certain various nations will watch it even more closely (we all use radar and visually observe various nations satellites that are in orbit to see exactly what they are doing).

Although it had maneuvered to various altitudes throughout its two years in space, hobbyist satellite observers had tracked the vehicle in a 200 by 220 mile orbit tilted 38 degrees to the equator, before it lowered to a 191 x 199 mile orbit in February and then raising to 220 x 225 miles.

https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/05/07/x ... t-landing/

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