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Waspie_Dwarf

Second X-37B prepares for launch

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Air Force's second X-37 space plane nears launch

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. -- Two months after a sister ship successfully concluded a demo flight, the U.S. military's second robotic X-37B space plane is in Florida preparing for blastoff March 4 on another secret mission, according to an Air Force official.

The 29-foot-long, 14-foot-wide space plane is being readied for flight in a processing facility near its launch site at Cape Canaveral, Fla., according to Lt. Col. Troy Giese, the X-37B program manager in the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office.

Like its predecessor last year, the X-37B will lift off inside the nose cone of an Atlas 5 rocket.

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The Patrick Air Force Base Press release is reproduced below:

Atlas V X-37B OTV-2 Cape launch set for March 4

Posted 2/28/2011 Updated 2/28/2011

Release Number: 030211

2/28/2011 - CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, Fla. -- The 45th Space Wing is set to launch an Atlas V Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle from Space Launch Complex 41 on March 4, 2011. The rocket will carry an Air Force X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV). The launch window for this Air Force mission opens at 3:39 p.m. EST.

The X-37B will provide a flexible space test platform to conduct various experiments and allow satellite sensors, subsystems, components and associated technology to be efficiently transported to and from the space environment where it will need to function.

Accredited media representatives interested in covering the launch from the Kennedy Space Center News Center must report by March 4, at 2:15 p.m. to the parking lot at the KSC Media Services Press Accreditation Building on State Road 3 across from Air Liquide, for Air Force badging and escort. Media representatives must provide proper credentials and two forms of identification, at least one with a photo. Drivers must have a valid current driver's license, motor vehicle registration and proof of insurance, and follow all safety and security procedures and instructions.

Notes:

1. Remote camera set-up: Media representatives interested in setting up remote cameras must report to the parking lot of Space Florida/SpaceX, near the CCAFS front gate, on March 3, at 12:30 p.m. for badging and escort to the SLC-41 area. Mike Rein and Mike Woolley of ULA Communications plan to meet and escort media. For further information, contact Mr. Rein at (321) 693-6250.\

2. Live satellite feed information for broadcast:

Atlas OTV-2: Satellite Coordinates: March 4

BEGIN TRANSMISSION (BARS AND TONE) - 2:45 P.M.

BROADCAST START - 3:30 P.M.

END TRANSMISSION - 6 P.M.

SATELLITE - AMC 6

TRANSPONDER - 5C

BAND - C-BAND ANALOG

ORBITAL POSITION - 72 DEGREES W

CARRIER - SES AMERICOM

BANDWIDTH - 36 MHz

UPLINK FREQ - 6025 MHz (Horizontal)

DOWNLINK FREQ - 3800 MHz (Vertical)

5. Webcast: The launch can be viewed via Webcast at: http://www.ulalaunch.com

-30-

Note: Dates and times of all launches are subject to change.

For more information, see www.patrick.af.mil, log on to www.facebook.com/45SpaceWing, or contact 45th Space Wing Public Affairs, 321-494-5933 or 321-508-2072 (mobile).

Source: Patrick Air Force Base

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I am very interested in knowing how much payload can this mini-shuttle put in orbit.

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