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Engineering Update #52: Secret Pentagon spacecraft stays in orbit for 469 days

Thu, 04/03/2014 - 11:00am
Jon Dipierro, Multimedia Production Specialist

In this episode of the Engineering Update, brought to you by Mouser Electronics:

Pentagon spacecraft stays in orbit 469 days
In December of 2012, the Pentagon launched the X-37B unmanned spacecraft into orbit, where it remained for more than 469 days, breaking its own longevity record. Since the X-37 has always been shrouded in secrecy, savvy observers posited all sorts of potential applications for the orbital test vehicle, including experimentation, military operations, and spying.

See: Photos of the Day: The Pentagon's secret orbital spacecraft

3D-printing replaces entire skull
Here on the update, we've talked pretty extensively about the potential uses of 3d printing in medical applications, but the uses for the technology are ever growing. Recently, a team of doctors in the Netherlands used 3D printing to replace the entire skull of a patient suffering from a disease that causes her bone structure to thicken, including her skull.

Darth Vader runs for President of Ukraine
When ECN says that some people have too much money, THIS is what we mean. In what's either an elaborate political stunt, an April Fool's prank, or an elaborate political stunt designed to capitalize on April Fool's, the Internet Party of Ukraine has paid the equivalent of $225,000 to register Darth Vader as a presidential candidate.

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