X037B is merely a week away from setting a record on its current top secret mission. If this plane is able to remain in orbit until March 25th, it will officially break the mission-duration mark of 674 days, as established in October of 2014.
Interestingly enough, the reason there is so much of a story regarding this potential record-breaking is because there is no story. The Air Force has been notoriously tight-lipped about the entire mission and the general public has no idea what the touchdown plans, if any, are.
Capt. AnnMarie Annicelli, an Air Force spokeswoman, told Space.com, "The landing date will be determined based on the completion of the program's on-orbit demonstrations and objectives for this mission,"
But this just creates more mystery surrounding not only when and if the plane will break the record, but what the objectives of this mission are. And rumors abound. One of them is a bit scary - that the plane might actually be a space-weapon. Other more banal rumors guess that the plane is testing space tech and helping researchers conduct experiments.
We'll be keeping an eye on this developing story, and look forward to seeing if it will remain in orbit and break the record, or come down.
The above image is of a Boeing X-37B inside payload fairing before launch, this image is a work of a U.S. Air Force Airman or employee, taken or made as part of that person's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image or file is in the public domain in the United States