X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle-3 Lands at Vandenberg AFB

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The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle mission 3 (OTV-3), the Air Force’s unmanned, reusable space plane, landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base at 9:24 a.m. Oct. 17, 2014. The OTV-3 conducted on-orbit experiments for 674 days during its mission, extending the total number of days spent on-orbit for the OTV program to 1367 days. The X-37B is the newest and most advanced re-entry spacecraft. Managed by the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office, the X-37B program performs risk reduction, experimentation and concept of operations development for reusable space vehicle technologies. (Photo credit: Boeing) Continue reading »

China’s ‘Jade Rabbit’ Rover Lands on Moon – First Photos


China landed an unmanned rover on the moon, making the Asian nation the third country after the US and the Soviet Union to touch down a spacecraft on the lunar surface.

The probe, carrying a rover dubbed Jade Rabbit that will survey the moon’s geology and natural resources, landed at about 9 pm Beijing on Saturday, the Xinhua News Agency said. China’s achievement comes 47 years after the Soviet Union performed a soft landing of its Luna 9 spacecraft on the moon.

The launch is part of the Asian nation’s growing space exploration ambitions, an effort which has seen the country spend billions of dollars even as other nations cut back. For its next step, China wants to land a lunar rover and return it to Earth in 2017, according to Xinhua. Continue reading »

Soyuz Spacecraft Lands on the Snow-Covered Steppes of Kazakhstan

An aerial view shows vehicles with their headlights on converging on the Soyuz TMA-02M spacecraft carrying ISS crew members, U.S. astronaut Michael Fossum, Russian cosmonaut Sergey Volkov and Japanese astronaut Satoshi Furukawa, after the spacecraft landed near the town of Arkalyk in northern Kazakhstan on November 22. (Shamil Zhumatov /Reuters) Continue reading »

Plane from U.S. Crash-Lands in Poland with 230 Passengers Aboard

A Boeing 767 of Polish LOT airlines makes an emergency landing at Warsaw airport on November 1. The plane en route from Newark with 230 people onboard made an emergency landing in Warsaw airport on Tuesday. No passengers were hurt, Polish media reported. (Peter Andrews / Reuters) Continue reading »