X-37B Mini Shuttle OTV-3 Lands at VAFB after 675 Days in Space

The US Air Force’s mini space shuttle, the X-37B, successfully landed October 17th at 16:24 UTC at Vandenberg Air Force Base after spending an incredible 675 days in orbit since it’s launch on December 11th 2012.

Whilst it is unknown what the X-37B does in orbit, this was the 3rd flight overall and the the first to reuse a frame, with this flight using the shuttle that flew the OTV-1 mission in 2010 which lasted 224 days.

The second flight which launched March 5th 2011 using a new spacecraft lasted 469 days after touching down at Vandenberg Air Force Base June 2012.

It is rumoured these space planes could be used to test communications, next generation spy sat technology, intelligence gathering or even deploying further payloads into orbit from the payload bay of the X-37B.

Source: US Air Force

Source: NASA Television

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