The 45th Space Wing successfully launched a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle September 7, 2017, from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A.
Approximately eight minutes after the launch, SpaceX successfully landed the Falcon 9 first-stage booster at Landing Zone 1 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
Brigadier General Wayne Monteith, the 45th SW commander, thanked the entire Orbital Test Vehicle 5 (OTV-5) mission team for their efforts in ensuring a successful launch.
«I’m incredibly proud of the 45th Space Wing’s contributions to the X-37B program», Monteith said. «This marks the fifth successful launch of the OTV and its first onboard a Falcon 9. A strong relationship with our mission partners, such as the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office, is vital toward maintaining the Eastern Range as the world’s premiere gateway to space».
The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle is led by the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO), with operations overseen by Air Force Space Command’s 3rd Space Experimentation Squadron. The OTV is designed to demonstrate reusable spacecraft technologies for America’s future in space and operate experiments, which can be returned to and examined on Earth.
|Primary Mission||Experimental test vehicle|
|Height||9 feet, 6 inches/2.9 meters|
|Length||29 feet, 3 inches/8.9 meters|
|Wingspan||14 feet, 11 inches/4.5 meters|
|Launch Weight||11,000 pounds/4,990 kilograms|
|Power||Gallium Arsenide Solar Cells with lithium-Ion batteries|
|Launch Vehicle||United Launch Alliance Atlas V (501)|