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X-37B spaceplane 'spying on China'

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posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 10:28 AM
China has recently announced it's new space program:

China announces major exploration plans

BEIJING • Broadening its challenge to the United States, the Chinese government Thursday announced an ambitious five-year plan for space exploration that could establish China as a major rival at a time when the U.S. program is in retreat.

Coupled with China's earlier vows to build a space station and put an astronaut on the moon, the announcement conjured up memories of the Cold War-era space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. The United States, which has de-emphasized manned space flight in recent years, is now dependent on Russia for transporting its astronauts to the International Space Station. Russia, for its part, has suffered an embarrassing string of failed satellite launchings.

Now a magazine is speculating that the American government is spying on the Chinese program with their new X-37B space plane which has been orbiting the earth for a while now:

America's classified X-37B spaceplane is probably spying on China, according to a report in Spaceflight magazine.

The unpiloted vehicle was launched into orbit by the US Air Force in March last year and has yet to return to Earth.

The Pentagon has steadfastly refused to discuss its mission but amateur space trackers have noted how its path around the globe is nearly identical to China's spacelab, Tiangong-1.

There is wide speculation that the X-37B is eavesdropping on the laboratory.

"Space-to-space surveillance is a whole new ball game made possible by a finessed group of sensors and sensor suites, which we think the X-37B may be using to maintain a close watch on China's nascent space station," said Spaceflight editor Dr David Baker.

The X-37B, also known as the Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV), looks like a mini space shuttle and can glide back down through the atmosphere to land on a runway, just like Nasa's re-usable manned spaceplane used to do before its retirement last July.

I personally believe this is sensationalism on behalf of the magazine, but it sure would be interesting if this claim were true, and if the Chinese were to try and do something about it.

The United States are obviously denying these claims whether they're true or not.

I also recall the Chinese shooting down that satellite a few years back which drew strong condemnation from the United States.

China confirms satellite downed

China has confirmed it carried out a test that destroyed a satellite, in a move that caused international alarm.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said a test had been carried out but insisted China was committed to the "peaceful development of outer space".

The US backed reports last week that China had used a ground-based medium-range ballistic missile to destroy a weather satellite.

A senior Taiwanese politician said he viewed it as an aggressive act.

It is the first known satellite intercept test for more than 20 years.

Several countries, including Japan, Australia and the US, have expressed concern at the test, amid worries it could trigger a space arms race.

It looks like the space race might be heating up. Perhaps I'm reading into this too much, but we all know that space is the next frontier when it comes to national defense, so I wouldn't blame these countries for wanting to keep a close eye on each others space progams, especially with everything else that is happening right now.

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 10:30 AM
Deja Vu
edit on 7-1-2012 by michael1983l because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 10:32 AM
reply to post by michael1983l

My first search didn't find anything, now I just searched with the same field and the other thread came up.

Thankfully the other thread is in BAN so this one can remain , and this one has much more info.

I would have never made this thread though if I had known of the other one

edit on 7-1-2012 by Corruption Exposed because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 10:33 AM
reply to post by Corruption Exposed

There must have been a glitch in the Matrix

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 10:43 AM
reply to post by michael1983l

Naww.. No matrix. Just ATS search.

Information gets indexed, never to be seen again. Perhaps NASA needs to focus around here to find that Black Hole we seem to have lurking.

To the topic, this is fascinating. Some of the recent diagrams are really incredible to see how this plane is apparently designed to deploy into it's own mini-space station, complete with solar arrays to unfold for power. It's like the swiss army knife of orbital platforms. Now, if it keeps peeking in Chinese windows, I wonder how long it'll be before China runs another test launch of their Anti-Satellite weapons and ...OOPS!..accidentally hit's our fancy X-37 Super-Spy platform above them?

Then again..for all we know, we have Russian or Chinese versions of the same thing peeking in OUR windows.
I mean, those two nations don't tell the whole planet their most secret systems like we seem to love who'd know if they had competing systems performing similar missions. Interesting times we're living in!

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 12:55 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

I always wondered why the US does that......

Why tell everyone your hand... In my minds eye, Russia is super powerful.. why? Because on the surface, they are outdated and behind... It is what they DON'T tell us that scares me.. I bet they are ahead of the US by now..

A satellite, to watch a satellite, watching a satellite.

posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 02:50 PM
reply to post by Shermanator

I hear ya on that. I can't help but think it's related to a real arrogance that has come to define our leaders. It's this baffling belief that we are somehow the absolute #1 on Earth in every way that matters, and we always will be.

Why else make public all these systems which may, in a war, be our life and death as a nation for using under the cloak of secrecy? The only answer I come up with is that 'they' sincerely believe that breaking secrecy will have no consequence because no one is anywhere close to being able to use it against us.

Does America have a lot to be proud of? Absolutely !

Should we let that become a dangerous arrogance? Umm.. Nope.

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