Black hole? What happened to this multi-billion-dollar spy satellite?

The loss of a classified, multi-billion-dollar government spy satellite is fast becoming a public black eye for private space transport and a whodunit mystery for industry watchers.

SpaceX said its Falcon 9 rocket, launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, performed flawlessly. Northrop Grumman, the aerospace contractor that hired SpaceX to sling its “Zuma” satellite into orbit, says it’s “classified.” A government official says the mission is a “write-off.”

In a statement Tuesday morning, SpaceX president and chief operating officer Gwynne Shotwel said, “After review of all data to date, Falcon 9 did everything correctly on Sunday night.”

“If we or others find otherwise based on further review, we will report it immediately,” she said. “Information published that is contrary to this statement is categorically false.”

It’s either not lost and they are lying or someone who doesn’t like being spied on took it out.


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