China’s Super Secretive Spaceplane Ejects a Mysterious Object into Orbit

After 166 days circling Earth, China’s secret spaceplane has ejected an unknown object into orbit, according to reports. Little is known about the experimental spacecraft, other than the fact it is reusable. Even less is known about the technology that’s just been thrown into Earth’s rotation.

The spaceplane, dubbed CSSHQ, was launched aboard a Long March 2F rocket in December last year, marking its longest mission yet. The object ejected into orbit has been catalogued as 59884 by the US Space Force. Jonathan McDowell, a space activity tracker, speculated that the object could be a subsatellite or a piece of hardware from an undisclosed mission.

China has maintained strict secrecy around the CSSHQ spaceplane, with leaked images being the only available visual information. Experts believe China’s goal is to develop a rival to the US’ X-37B spaceplane. The spacecraft is part of China’s plans to advance its satellite-based radio navigation system, causing concern for Western nations.

The CSSHQ spaceplane’s first launch was in September 2020, lasting only two days. The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) announced plans to develop a fully reusable, two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) space transportation system prior to its inaugural launch.

In conclusion, the mysterious ejection of an object into orbit by China’s secretive spaceplane raises questions about the country’s space ambitions and technological advancements. The implications of this event on international relations and space exploration remain to be seen.