The unmanned hypersonic glider that could hit speeds of up to Mach 20? Well, it was launched yesterday morning from a rocket, but it seems as though contact was lost shortly after the experimental craft built just for DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) started to fly on its own. At press time, there was very little information on just how much of the mission’s goals were actually completed.
This is not the first time it happened though, as it was the second of two planned flights of a Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle-2, with the same thing occurring during the first mission. Hopefully this diminutive craft was able to go a little bit farther than its predecessor.
Also known as the HTV-2 for short, it was specially designed for it to be launched to the edge of space, make a separation from its booster before going through the atmosphere at 13,000 mph (21,000 kph) – right before it will return back intentionally, crashing smack into the ocean.