An unmanned US space plane has set its new endurance record after spending 2.5 years in orbit before landing on Saturday, the developer of the spacecraft, Boeing, said.
“The Boeing-built X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV) set a new endurance record after spending 908 days in orbit before landing at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 5:22 a.m. ET, Nov 12, 2022.
This surpasses its previous record of 780 days in-orbit,”. The solar-powered spacecraft resembles the retired space shuttle, but is several times smaller, about 9 meters long. Its 5 previous missions in orbit lasted from 224 to 780 days.
Autonomous orbital test vehicle spent 908 days on orbit before landing at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center,” the company said.
This time, the spacecraft hosted a service module, which conducted experiments for the US Naval Research Laboratory, the US Air Force Academy and others, the company said.
With the successful completion of its sixth mission the reusable spaceplane has now flown over 1.3 billion miles and spent a total of 3,774 days in space where it conducts experiments for government and industry partners with the ability to return them to Earth for evaluation.