Pentagon’s X-37B Space Force Warplane Soon To Take Flight On A Secret Mission

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The US Space Force (USSF) is about to launch its X-37B reusable and unmanned mini space shuttle on a secret mission. Mission specifics are sparse, but many believe that it represents the US military's warning to (primarily) Russian and Chinese rivals of its intention of achieving space superiority. 

With six missions already under its belt, the X-37B prototype spacecraft is scheduled to launch on Monday at 8:14 pm Eastern time aboard a SpaceX Falcon Heavy reusable rocket. The Space Force and Department of the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office state the X-37B "Mission 7 will launch on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket for the first time, designated USSF-52, with a wide range of test and experimentation objectives. These tests include operating the reusable spaceplane in new orbital regimes, experimenting with future space domain awareness technologies, and investigating the radiation effects on materials provided by NASA.”

Besides some harmless-looking NASA scientific experiments, the mission brief mentions "space domain awareness technologies", which, if you refer to the US Space Force's executive office page, also happens to be called Space Domain Awareness and Combat Power. This segment of the Space Force is one of the largest, comprising 1,200 personnel (out of the 8,600 in the entire USSF). While the X-37B isn't likely experimenting with anything related to "combat power" this time, it is clearly focused on researching technologies/techniques of maintaining "awareness" in space.

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Another interesting aspect to this seventh flight is that the X-37B will be launched on Elon Musk's Falcon Heavy, the most powerful rocket in operation. The X-37B had smoothly and successfully launched on a Falcon 9 on its fifth mission. Falcon Heavy is basically three Falcon 9s first-stages strapped together, which seems rather over-powered. Could this be a test of either craft's high-angle rapid deployment capabilities?

The militarization of space is undoubtedly heating up, with at least China and Russia heavily invested int their own programs. So far, none of the superpowers have done any live weapons testing on their respectively space flights, but seriously, have none of them watched For All Mankind and what a bad idea this might be?