Zuma to be launched into orbit

True Story: The US Is Sending 'Zuma' Into Space

Zuma to be launched into orbit

Although the public has many questions about the payload-codenamed "Zuma"-those working on the mission have supplied limited information".

The launch was brokered by defense contractor Northrop Grumman on behalf of the USA government.

The US government will be launching Zuma into space on Thursday.

Launch Window: 10 p.m.

"SpaceX is now targeting Thursday, Nov. 16 for launch of the Zuma mission", said SpaceX spokesman John Tayor. "Falcon 9 and Zuma went vertical last night on Pad 39A".

For a launch scheduled later today, at 8 PM EST (5 PM PST), that second part might be cut from the live video feed found below, due to the sensitive nature of the Falcon 9's payload. But the most interesting part of the mission might be the payload itself - dubbed "Zuma", we know nearly nothing else about the mysterious spacecraft. While SpaceX has launched a number of mysterious payloads such as this, we've always known where they're coming from, be it the US Air Force or the National Reconnaissance Office.

Zuma satellite mission patch. The first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket will attempt a land-based return after sending the payload into orbit.

Mysterious CLIO payload shrouded beneath 4-meter-diameter payload fairing in this up close view of the top of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket prior to launch from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

Named "Zuma", the mission procured by Northrop Grumman will use a Falcon 9 rocket to put the satellite into low Earth orbit about 1,200 miles above the surface.

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