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A top secret robotic space plane has blasted off from Cape Canaveral, and the involvement of a US military agency in the project has Iran - and maybe China - worried about the possibilities of what could be a prototype 'space bomber'.

Officially, the X-37B (above) is on a test flight to evaluate the vehicle's Performance. But the space plane's pedigree as an offshoot of the shuttle programme has led some to suggest it could eventually conduct espionage missions in orbit - and is another step on the road to the "weaponisation of space".

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