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According to the Air Force, this is the fourth successful mission for the project, with the first three landing at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.In total, the two craft have spent a total of 2,085 days in orbit.7, 2017, onboard a Space X Falcon 9 launch vehicle, the Navy has revealed.The X-37B (pictured) one of two in the Air Force fleet, conducted unspecified experiments for more than 700 days while in orbit.Pentagon policy "prohibits any public comment" on the review process until an official announcement is made.With the endorsement of then-President Barack Obama, Pentagon officials in 2010 petitioned members of the Senate Armed Services Committee to restore Lavelle's rank.Like a shuttle, X-37B is blasted into orbit by a rocket.However, it lands using a runway like a normal aircraft.
The service has begun a review process that could lead to the posthumous restoration of two ranks to Maj. Lavelle, who was demoted and fired over alleged unauthorized airstrikes over North Vietnam, has exclusively learned.The X-37B is too small to carry people onboard, but does have a cargo bay similar to that of a pickup truck, which is just large enough to carry a small satellite The Air Force relocated the program in 2014, taking over two of NASA's former shuttle-processing hangars.Air Force officials said that several technologies are being tested in the program.Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson has agreed to review the case before an official recommendation is made. Lavelle is still under review," Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said on Tuesday.If approved, the petition would head to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis before potential White House approval and a future Senate committee vote. "It would be inappropriate for the Air Force to comment further since the Air Force will make a recommendation on the case, but is not the decision authority." Related content: The Defense Department considers a medal restoration as critically as any medals upgrade, defense officials have told in recent weeks.