Space Exploration or Espionage ?

March 2013


The outer space and the open skies are increasingly becoming the battlefronts for technological superiority between superpowers. It is most likely that the one having an edge over others in the sky will call the shots in the battlefield, hence the fierce competation for control of the skies.

On 11th December 2012 the U.S. Airforce's mysterious X-37B space craft lifted off to space from a launch pad at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The the craft is unmanned and its looks is as scary as its mission. This was the third sojourn of this kind in the outer space. The U.S. defense sources say the craft is an Orbital Test Vehicle - 3 ( OTV - 3 ) Test Plane under Airforce's Rapid Capabilitieies Office. The cargo on board is a highly guarded secret.


But, according to some analysts the X-37B plane was launched to eavesdrop on the the chinese activites especially the "Tiangong" space programme. Those tracking the X-37B flight path suggest that it closely matches that of " Tiangong - 1" - the orbital chinese premier experimental space staion. In apparent rejoinder the chinese launched a robotic space plane - the shenglong. The Shenglong robotic plane somehow resembles the X-37B though smaller in size. Some watchers have suggested that the technology behind the X-37B plane might have gotten into chinese hands somehow and they are improving on it increamentally.