Dawn Aerospace announced Dec. 9 that it received approval from the New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to begin flying the Mk-II Aurora, a 4.8-meter-long test vehicle the company developed as part of a long-term campaign to develop a reusable spaceplane.
The results of the experiment could drive the design of a dedicated spacecraft to capture solar power in space.
United Launch Alliance on May 17 launched an Atlas 5 rocket carrying the U.S. Air Force X-37B spaceplane to orbit for its sixth mission
The X-37B Operational Test Vehicle 6 is scheduled for a May 16 launch on a ULA Atlas 5 rocket.
A space shuttle-era main engine is undergoing a series of daily test firings to demonstrate its suitability for use on a reusable spaceplane under development.