The Air Force’s secret space plane has been up in orbit for nearly 500 days—a space endurance record. But nearly a year and a half into the mission, the Pentagon still won’t say what the X-37B is doing up there, or when it might come back.The U.S. Air Force boosted the robotic X-37B atop the nose of an Atlas-5 rocket in December 2012.
Since then it’s orbited the Earth thousands of times, overflying such interesting places as North Korea and Iran.Similar to the Space Shuttle in appearance, the diminutive X-37B is about a quarter the size of the old shuttles.
But there are major differences. Lacking a crew, the spacecraft has no cockpit windows. The X-37B has a…
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