Range Tracking

OTV-5 returns to orbit

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches the OTV-5 mission into orbit for the U.S. Air Force at 10:00 a.m. on 7 September 2017 from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center. About eight minutes after launch, the Falcon 9 first stage successfully landed at Landing Zone 1 at the adjacent Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

This is the fifth flight of the Boeing X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV), a small, winged, reusable spacecraft that looks like a tiny version of the Space Shuttle. Like the Space Shuttle, the X-37B glides back to Earth to land on a runway. OTV-5 is conducting mostly secret operations in Earth orbit with almost everything except the launch being classified.

Click to view more OTV-5 launch photos.

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