Boeing has launched the second X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV) for the US Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO) on an Atlas V rocket into a low-Earth orbit.

The X-37B design combines aircraft and spacecraft design into an unmanned space-based test platform.

The programme objectives include space experimentation, risk reduction, and concept-of-operations development for reusable space vehicle technologies.

The first OTV, launched in April last year, successfully de-orbited after eight months and landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, US, where it is undergoing post-flight evaluation.

Programme management, engineering, test and mission support functions for the OTV programme are conducted at Boeing sites in Huntington Beach, Seal Beach, and El Segundo, California, US.