The alleged Chinese spy balloon that took to American airspace in February was collecting data on U.S. military bases, according to a new report. 

The balloon flew over several military bases, and the Chinese government allegedly collected information amid the United States’ efforts to block it, according to NBC News.

The information collected was primarily based on electronic signals from weapons systems and communications of military base personnel, according to NBC News.

U.S. officials said efforts to block information from being transmitted successfully limited the data the balloon collected, per NBC News.

The Department of Defense (DOD) was adamant that the information the balloon collected had little more value than what could be collected by satellites in low orbit, according to NBC News. 

At the time, the DOD said in a statement, “The balloon is currently traveling at an altitude well above commercial air traffic and does not present a military or physical threat to people on the ground.”

National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby also downplayed the impact of the information allegedly collected by the Chinese.

“Knowing it was going to enter U.S. airspace we took action to limit the ability of this balloon to garner anything of additive or especially useful content,” he said, per NBC News. “So again, I won’t get ahead of what we’re learning off this thing.”

The balloon reportedly flew over military bases in Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, and Missouri on its three-day flight before being shot down off the South Carolina coast, according to the Washington Examiner.

Still, some politicians on both sides of the aisle were less than reassured by the government’s explanation that the balloon collected information of limited value.

Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) said, “The administration’s explanation that the balloon had ‘limited additive value’ is little comfort to Montanans and the American people and weak spin on an issue the administration mishandled from start to finish,” reported NBC News.

“We knew all along that China’s invasion of our airspace was no accident,” said Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT), per Fox News. “There’s nothing more important than keeping America safe, and I’ll keep holding the Biden Administration accountable to ensure Montanans’ freedom and privacy are protected.”

Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MI) said, “We have consistently learned more from press reports about the Chinese surveillance balloon than we have from administration officials. …I intend to hold this administration accountable,” per NBC News.  

As reported by The Dallas Express, after the balloon was spotted, China’s Foreign Ministry maintained that it was for weather research and reached the U.S. due to forces out of its control.  

The balloon reportedly had a self-destruct mechanism, but it was unclear if China decided not to trigger it or if it malfunctioned, according to NBC News. 

The balloon flew over Montana’s Malmstrom Air Force Base, known for storing the country’s nuclear weapons, per NBC News.

At the time, Robert W. Allen, a professor of homeland security at Tulane University, told The Dallas Express. “I find it very interesting that the balloon has been spotted over Montana, where one of our three nuclear weapon silos are [sic] located. I would not be surprised if it went over Washington D.C. before it went out to the Atlantic Basin.”

While the spy balloon’s flight path never reached the U.S. capital, Allen’s assessment turned out to be accurate.

The U.S. waited for the balloon to fly over the ocean before shooting it down to prevent damage or casualties on the ground. The balloon was described as being the size of three buses.