Just a few days ago, China’s secret Shenlong space plane was spotted releasing six “mysterious wingmen”.
However, more information has now come to light.
The apparent “wingmen” could be debris from the space plane’s launch vehicle – but there’s something even more sinister.
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The most worrying bit are allegations that the space plane could be sending signals back to Earth.
They could be being sent to a hidden ground station or a ship near North America’s west coast.
According to the South China Morning Post (SCMP), this news comes from an amateur astronomer.
Based in British Columbia, Scott Tilley has been tracking the space plane since it entered Earth’s orbit last week.
Tilley told SCMP in an email that he had detected strong signal emissions at 2,280 MHz from the craft or one of its “wingmen”.
“I’m seeing a pattern in its radio emissions while over me, and it appears to favor low-elevation western passes,” said Tilley.
“This could indicate a clandestine ground station on the west coast of North America or a ship off the coast.”
However, it’s important to note that this is just speculation.
The Shenlong space plane, which is comparable to the US’ X-37B, has been tracked by satellite since its launch from the Gobi Desert last Thursday.
Tilley claims that “Object A”, the space plane, appeared very bright with stable altitude control.
He also suggested the “Object D” and “Object E” might be a pair of satellites, which were released by the plane and transmitted radio signals similar to “Object A”.
Unlike “Object A’, though, the signals appear to have contained no date, just “idle filler”.
“Object B”, which was “very bright”, was likely an upper-stage rocket due to its light curve, according to Tilley.
“Object C” and “Object F” were also identified as rocket debris, as they appeared to be tumbling and faint, Tilley said.
This is the Shenlong space plane’s third mission, which released unknown objects during its previous missions, which lasted two days and nine months respectively.
However, very little is known as the objects’ nature or purpose, or even about Shelong itself, let alone how long the current mission will last.