Virgin Galactic plans to resume suborbital flight tests of SpaceShipTwo (SS2) VSS Unity in late October from Spaceport America in New Mexico after a 20-month long hiatus, according to a filing the company made with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
A provision in George Whitesides’ contract has Virgin Galactic’s chief space officer — and possibly his wife, Loretta Hidalgo Whitesides — flying on one of SpaceShipTwo’s early suborbital flights from Spaceport America in New Mexico.
Virgin Galactic (VG) is seeking a waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to use its WhiteKnightTwo (WK2) carrier aircraft for more than occasionally dropping SpaceShipTwo out of the sky.
Individually sized, reclining seats for G-force management and float zone volume;
Automated mood lighting harmonizes with each flight phase;
Personal seat back screens connect astronauts to live flight data;
Cabin architecture facilitates effortless movement in weightlessness;
16 cameras provide high definition footage and stills;
12 cabin windows for astronauts to gaze at Earth from;
Largest mirror in a spaceship cabin – mirror reflects the real-time astronaut experience.
LAS CRUCES, N.M., July 28, 2020 (Virgin Galactic PR) – Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SPCE) (“Virgin Galactic” or “the Company”), a vertically integrated aerospace and space travel company, today revealed the cabin interior of its first SpaceShipTwo vehicle, VSS Unity in a virtual event streamed live on YouTube.
Video Caption: Join a virtual walkthrough of SpaceShipTwo Unity’s cabin, curated by our design team. Want to fly to space with us? Join our community of Spacefarers to take One Small Step towards reserving your seat on our flights. More info; https://virgingalactic.com/smallstep/
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (Virgin Galactic PR) — Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SPCE) (“Virgin Galactic” or “the Company”), a vertically integrated aerospace company, today announced that SpaceShipTwo’s cabin interior design reveal will take place on July 28, 2020. The virtual event will be streamed live on YouTube. In celebration of this milestone, the Company will also be announcing plans to bring immersive versions of Virgin Galactic’s spaceflight and cabin interior experience, to aspiring astronauts around the world.
I found this video entertaining. I’m not sure this guy has any grasp of the technological challenges or how SpaceX and Virgin Galactic are trying to tackle it.
He also calls a pair of routine pilot proficiency flights of WhiteKnightTwo at Spaceport America mysterious. Nothing really unusual about them. They conducted these flights at Mojave regularly.
Hypersonic sounds great, but it’s not clear when or if it will carry passengers. What we might be left with are hypersonic weapons indistinguishable from nuclear missiles. The chance of an accidental nuclear exchange could become much greater.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine floated this idea during the Next-generation Suborbital Researchers Conference back in March. They’re clearly moving forward with it.
Bridenstine has mentioned that NASA needed some sort of plan to certify the vehicles. It will be interesting to see what the space agency will require of Blue Origin’s New Shepard and Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo before conducting any astronaut training on the suborbital systems.
The vehicles can provide several minutes of continuous weightless as well as experience in rocket-powered acceleration and re-entry.
Astronauts train aboard aircraft flying parabolic arcs that provide about 25 seconds of microgravity at a time. NASA contracts for training with Zero Gravity Corporation, which uses a modified Boeing 727.
MOJAVE, Calif., (Virgin Galactic PR) — Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:SPCE) (“Virgin Galactic” or “the Company”) and its wholly owned subsidiary, The Spaceship Company (“TSC”), announced today the signing of a Space Act Agreement with NASA to facilitate the development of high speed technologies.
The Space Act Agreement (“SAA”), is set to enable and foster collaboration between NASA, Virgin Galactic and The Spaceship Company in order to advance the United States’ efforts to produce technically feasible, high Mach vehicles for potential civil applications.