A New Try to Launch Space Plane
"The X-37B space plane will likely test tech for future satellites during its months in space."
SPACE.com Download time: Mar 5 2011 8:23 AM ET
The U.S. Air Force will try to launch its second secretive X-37B space plane from Florida again today (March 5), after bad weather foiled the first attempt yesterday.
The unmanned X-37B mini-shuttle — which is known as Orbital Test Vehicle 2, or OTV-2 — is slated to launch at 4:09 p.m. EST (2109 GMT) today from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The reusable space plane will ride to orbit atop an Atlas 5 rocket to begin its mysterious mission, if the weather allows.
Two launch attempts were thwarted yesterday due to high winds and thick cumulus clouds. The latter posed an unacceptable lightning risk, according to launch provider United Launch Alliance (ULA), which is overseeing launch preparations.
The forecast for today doesn't look much better. On Friday afternoon, ULA officials said there's a 70 percent chance bad weather will delay today's launch try. …
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