FLORIDA: A highly classified spy satellite worth upwards of a billion dollars has been lost in space after being launched aboard a rocket owned by Elon Musk’s SpaceX business.
The satellite named Zuma was destroyed after failing to properly separate from the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, Dow Jones reported.
Members of Congress were briefed on the spacecraft’s destruction, but neither SpaceX or NASA gave any details of its loss.
“This is a classified mission,” a spokesman for defence tech business Northrop Grumman said.
“We cannot comment on classified missions.”
Northrop Grumman made the Zuma satellite for the US government but has not elaborated about the device’s capabilities or its demise.
“We do not comment on missions of this nature; but as of right now reviews of the data indicate Falcon 9 performed nominally,” a SpaceX spokesperson said.
It is believed the Zuma burned up in the atmosphere.
SpaceX, which has multiple contracts to launch spacecraft with NASA, the US Air Force and commercial industries, has more than 70 missions scheduled.
It conducted 18 launches last year.