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SpaceX is launching a secret mission called 'Zuma'

SpaceX is launching a secret mission called 'Zuma'

SpaceX is getting ready to launch a secret satellite to orbit Wednesday night (Nov. 15).

SpaceX has issued a warning that its upcoming mission will include a return to a land-based platform, which should result in a sonic boom.

"The payload aboard SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is a top-secret passenger for the U.S. government named Zuma", reported SpaceFlight Now on Wednesday.

One of the very few tidbits of information we can absolutely confirm (and not deny) is that the clandestine and ownerless "Zuma" Spysat is now targeted for a nighttime launch on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from seaside Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida during a lengthy 2 hour window.

United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket carrying the CLIO mission for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company launched at 8:10 p.m. EDT September 16, 2014 from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

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SpaceX will loft Zuma for the USA government, in a launch procured by aerospace and defense company Northrop Grumman. However, no government agency has admitted to be the brains behind Zuma this time. Northrop Grumman spokesperson Lon Rains said, as reported by Express, "As a company, Northrop Grumman realises that this is monumental responsibility and have taken great care to ensure the most affordable and lowest risk scenario for Zuma".

It's not clear which U.S. government agency or department is involved.

Zuma is one of the more secretive missions in recent memory, given that even the part of the government responsible for it remains unknown. The National Reconnaissance Office, the government defense agency responsible for USA spy satellites, has not released any statement on the impending launch.

The launch was set for Wednesday, but pushed back a day "to conduct additional mission assurance work", according to SpaceX.

The company will try to land the Falcon 9 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Landing Zone 1.


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