Video footage of a mysterious rocket seen at a former US naval base has leaked online. SKY7, a helicopter from ABC7 News, recently spotted this rocket on the tarmac at Alameda Naval Air Station in California.
Presence of this rocket at the former US naval station is shrouded in mystery as there is no official information on why it was there.
According to ABC7 News, SKY7 was flying over Alameda when the pilot spotted the mysterious rocket. It was being moved from a runway toward a building where the Navy used to test jet engines.
According to ABC7 News, this rocket appears to belong to a startup, an aerospace research firm, which has not yet got an official name. ABC7 News also obtained a lease application document filed with the City of Alameda from local officials, which revealed that the rocket is called Astra and is the world’s smallest, according to the startup. The document also suggests that this rocket is designed to carry a payload of 100 kg.
Yes, that’s a rocket. And yes, it was just tested a stone’s throw from some of Alameda’s finest drinking establishments. pic.twitter.com/JVftjRrWvf
— Jonathan Bloom (@BloomTV) February 17, 2018
When the news outlet called the firm, an employee answered the phone by saying, “Stealth space!”
A member of the firm told ABC7 that about a hundred people work for this firm. The company is not ready to reveal any other details about it.
The news outlet claims that the firm wants to eventually transform the former naval air station into a space technology hub. The Alameda Naval Air Station was closed by the government in 1997.
The rocket was also noticed by people living near the former naval air station.
“It’s exciting to see what’s going on with the private aerospace industry,” said Lance Winters, who owns St George Spirits distillery located close to the base.
“To see it this close to home is even more exciting.”
Faction Brewing employee Madeleine Tonzi said: “I heard helicopters, and when I look behind me, I see a giant truck with a huge missile on it.”
The video footage captured by SKY7 suggests that engineers were most likely conducting a ground test of the rocket, which left black char marks on the concrete pavement.
“I’d be excited to see that,” Tonzi said.
“I was kind of bummed that i missed out on the Elon Musk (SpaceX) launch.”