STP Sets Space Launch Milestone

The Defense Department’s Space Test Program (STP) administered by Space and Missile Systems Center’s Space Development and Test Wing at Kirtland AFB, N.M., completed a major milestone on Sept. 10, 2009 (US date), flying its 200th mission. In operation since 1967, STP provides access to space for DOD space research and development efforts, many of which translate into operational space systems that benefit warfighters and national security. STP also manages all DOD payloads on NASA’s space shuttles and the International Space Station. The 200th mission comprised two payloads aboard the demonstration flight of the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle, launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan. (SMC Sept. 16 release; SMC is headquartered at Los Angeles AFB, Calif.)