A noisy image captures through a long time exposure the track of the U.S. Air Force’s X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle on its second flight in Earth orbit. The image is noteworthy for the brief brightening event that occurred; most likely from some part of the vehicle, probably the deployed solar array, catching the sunlight just right causing the small, faint vehicle to flare-up in brightness momentarily then fade again quickly. The image was taken just before 6:00 a.m. on 25 May 2011 as the X-37B passed over the backyard. The vehicle is moving from right to left in the image. The elongated shapes moving at an angle to the vehicle's path are star trails.

Missed Photo Opportunity
Launch date: 5 March 2011
Time: 5:46 p.m.
Location: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
Payload: X-37B (US Air Force “spaceplane” orbital test vehicle - second flight)
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V

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