SpaceXs most recent launch carried a secret military-funded experiment

A previously-undisclosed payload funded by a U.S. military research agency rode into orbit with a Spanish communications satellite on SpaceXs most recent Falcon 9 rocket launch March 6, officials said Friday.

The small spacecraft was fastened inside the Hispasat 30W-6 communications satellite, then ejected soon after the Falcon 9s primary payload deployed in orbit following liftoff from Cape Canaveral.

Officials from Space Systems/Loral and NovaWurks, two companies involved in the project, acknowledged the existence of the secret secondary satellite after publicly-available orbital data published by the U.S. military registered an unexpected object attributed to Tuesdays launch named PODSat.
However, as this is a DARPA project, we are not at liberty to discuss any specifics or details relative to the mission, except as approved by DARPA, Greer said.

NovaWurks developed what it calls the Hyper-Integrated Satlet, or HISat, architecture with funding from DARPAs Phoenix program, chartered to find lower-cost ways of building satellites and delivering them to space. Each HISat cell is a self-contained spacecraft, and engineers can connect multiple HISats to expand capability based on a missions specific requirements.
PODSat is the second mission to test out NovaWurks’ satlet concept in orbit. A third satlet demonstrator, incorporating 14 HISat cells, is scheduled for blastoff later this year on a rideshare mission arranged by Spaceflight Industries for launch on a Falcon 9 rocket.