With the impending retirement of the current Space Shuttle program run by NASA, the Obama administration is looking for a cheaper alternative to head into space, and the US Air Force X-37b Orbital Space Plane is considered to be one of the best and cost-effective options. Things have been going much quicker than anticipated, which was made evident with the successful launch on Thursday from Cape Canaveral in Florida.
This unmanned spacecraft has been getting a lot of media attention of late; this is due to the nature of its secret mission. There are people who would have you believe that the X-37b would be used for surveillance, but could there be another agenda?
None of us are certain what agenda the US Air Force has with the X-37b, CSMonitor believes that it could be anything from repairing spy satellites, or a mobile spy satellite itself or even as a prototype weapon — could this finally be the Star Wars program?
One thing is certain; in its current form this is no replacement to the Space Shuttle program, but we know how resourceful the U.S. Air Force can be.
*Identifying Monetised Links - outgoing links that we monetise are marked with an '*' symbol.