EXTREM REAR OF SPACECRAFT [BOEING X- 37]

The Boeing X-37, also known as the Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV), is a reusable uncrewed spacecraft. It is boosted into space by a launch vehicle, then re-enters Earth's atmosphere and lands as a spaceplane. The X-37 is operated by the United States Air Force for orbital spaceflight missions intended to demonstrate reusable space technologies.[4] It is a 120%-scaled derivative of the earlier Boeing X-40. The X-37 began as a NASA project in 1999, before being transferred to the U.S. Department of Defense in 2004. Its first flight was during a drop test in 2006. There have been five X-37 orbital missions. The spaceplane's first mission, USA-212, was launched in April 2010 and returned to Earth in December 2010. A second X-37 was launched on mission USA-226 in March 2011 and returned in June 2012. The third mission was USA-240 which launched in December 2012 and landed in October 2014. The fourth mission, USA-261, launched in May 2015 and landed in May 2017. The fifth and latest X-37 mission, USA-277, launched on 7 September 2017.

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