Military Space - Spacecraft, Weapons and Tech

From spy satellites and missile defense to robot space planes and orbital platforms, get the latest news and views on military space technology.
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Military Satellites Likely Saw Missile Strike on Malaysian Airlines Flight
An artist's image of a GEO satellite
July 18th, 2014
When a missile struck Malaysian Airlines flight MH17, it's likely that heat from the explosion was detected from space by a sophisticated network of military satellites.
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US Too Dependent on Russian Rocket Engines, Experts Tell Lawmakers
The Russian RD-180 rocket engines seen here are used to launch expendable Atlas 5 rockets operated by the U.S. launch provider United Launch Alliance.
July 17th, 2014
Experts told a Senate hearing Wednesday that key American national-security space missions could be delayed by four to six years if Russia decides to cut off its supply of RD-180 rocket engines.
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Lockheed Martin Lands $914 Million Space Fence Contract
Artist's Illustration of the Space Fence
June 5th, 2014
Lockheed Martin will build the U.S. Air Force’s next-generation space surveillance system.
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Atlas 5 Rocket Launches Clandestine US Spy Satellite
A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket carrying the NROL-33 satellite launches into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on May 22, 2014. The mission will deliver a classified payload into orbit for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Offi
May 22nd, 2014
An unmanned Atlas 5 rocket will launch a classified spy satellite payload for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office at 9:05 a.m. EDT (1405 GMT) from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
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Russia Calls for Ban of US Military Launches Using Russian Rocket Engines
United Launch Alliance Atlas V Rocket Prepared for Stacking
May 13th, 2014
A senior Russian official said he would ban exports of Russian-made rocket engines used to launch U.S. military satellites, and added that Russia doesn't intend to continue cooperating with the U.S. on the International Space Station beyond 2020.
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Experimental Space Plane Designs Wanted by US Military
DARPA's Experimental Space Plane Deploying a Satellite
July 15th, 2014
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded initial design contracts for its Experimental Spaceplane project, known as XS-1, to three different companies: Boeing, Masten Space Systems and Northrop Grumman.
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US Navy Launches SM-3 Missile from Land in Big Test (Photo)
Aegis Ashore Weapons System
May 22nd, 2014
The U.S. Navy successfully launched a Standard Missile-3 — traditionally a ship-based, anti-ballistic missile — from an onshore launch site for the first time, military officials announced today (May 21).
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Air Force Would Prefer New Rocket Engine Over US Version of Russian Design
A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket launched a new GPS satellite for the U.S. Air Force Friday (May 16).
May 21st, 2014
Should recent geopolitical events ultimately prompt the U.S. government to build a domestic alternative to the Russian-built RD-180 engine that powers one of its workhorse rockets, it probably makes more sense to develop one from scratch.
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