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Virgin Galactic reveals new craft for commercial space travel
POSTED 22 Feb 2016 . BY Tom Anstey
The new Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity is the first vehicle to be manufactured by Virgin Galactic’s own manufacturing arm, The Spaceship Company
Sir Richard Branson’s intergalactic ambitions have taken flight once more, after Virgin Galactic unveiled an updated version of its commercial spacecraft, which will begin a new round of testing following a fatal crash 16 months ago.

The incident, which killed co-pilot Michael Alsbury and seriously injured pilot Peter Siebold, happened in November 2014. While testing, the craft suffered a catastrophic in-flight breakup and crashed into California’s Mojave Desert, seriously delaying plans to create commercial spaceflight a reality.

The new Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity is the first vehicle to be manufactured by Virgin Galactic’s own manufacturing arm, The Spaceship Company. At present there are plans to create a total of five VSS crafts.

First unveiled in 2008, the passenger plane is piggybacked to a high altitude by a larger plane. A rocket is then fired at 50,000ft (15,240m) to carry the unattached vessel into the earth’s upper atmosphere on the fringes of space.

During the flight, passengers will experience about four minutes of weightlessness, and will be able to view the Earth from roughly 150,000ft (45,700m) up.

"We're very much looking forward to starting the test programme and getting back on track," said Branson.

"Together, we can make space accessible in a way that has only been dreamt of before now, and by doing so can bring positive change to life on Earth.

"Our beautiful new spaceship, VSS Unity, is the embodiment of that goal and will provide us with an unprecedented body of experience which will in turn lay the foundations for Virgin Galactic's future."

For those who can’t afford the US$250,000 (€225,500, £176,200) flight cost, the experience will be available a little closer to home, with a multi-million dollar visitor experience at Virgin’s Spaceport America in New Mexico, offering a hands-on, authentic experience inside a commercial space launch facility.

During the flight, passengers will experience about four minutes of weightlessness, and will be able to view the Earth from roughly 150,000ft (45,700m) u
First unveiled in 2008, the passenger plane is piggybacked to a high altitude by a larger plane
MORE NEWS
Heartbreak for Swedish theme park, Liseberg, as fire breaks out
A fire has destroyed part of the new water world, Oceana, at Liseberg in Sweden, and a construction worker has been reported missing.
Museum director apologises after comparing the city of Florence to a sex worker
Museum director Cecilie Hollberg has come under fire for comparing the city to a sex worker due to uncontrolled mass tourism.
Populous reveals plans for major e-sports arena in Saudi Arabia
Populous have unveiled their plans for a state-of-the-art e-sports arena, designed to stand as a central landmark in Qiddaya City’s gaming and e-sports district, Saudi Arabia.
Raby Castle reveals ambitious plans to become a major visitor destination
Raby Castle, known as one of the finest medieval fortifications in England, is nearing the end of an ambitious two-year renovation project.
+ More news   
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NEWS
Virgin Galactic reveals new craft for commercial space travel
POSTED 22 Feb 2016 . BY Tom Anstey
The new Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity is the first vehicle to be manufactured by Virgin Galactic’s own manufacturing arm, The Spaceship Company
Sir Richard Branson’s intergalactic ambitions have taken flight once more, after Virgin Galactic unveiled an updated version of its commercial spacecraft, which will begin a new round of testing following a fatal crash 16 months ago.

The incident, which killed co-pilot Michael Alsbury and seriously injured pilot Peter Siebold, happened in November 2014. While testing, the craft suffered a catastrophic in-flight breakup and crashed into California’s Mojave Desert, seriously delaying plans to create commercial spaceflight a reality.

The new Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity is the first vehicle to be manufactured by Virgin Galactic’s own manufacturing arm, The Spaceship Company. At present there are plans to create a total of five VSS crafts.

First unveiled in 2008, the passenger plane is piggybacked to a high altitude by a larger plane. A rocket is then fired at 50,000ft (15,240m) to carry the unattached vessel into the earth’s upper atmosphere on the fringes of space.

During the flight, passengers will experience about four minutes of weightlessness, and will be able to view the Earth from roughly 150,000ft (45,700m) up.

"We're very much looking forward to starting the test programme and getting back on track," said Branson.

"Together, we can make space accessible in a way that has only been dreamt of before now, and by doing so can bring positive change to life on Earth.

"Our beautiful new spaceship, VSS Unity, is the embodiment of that goal and will provide us with an unprecedented body of experience which will in turn lay the foundations for Virgin Galactic's future."

For those who can’t afford the US$250,000 (€225,500, £176,200) flight cost, the experience will be available a little closer to home, with a multi-million dollar visitor experience at Virgin’s Spaceport America in New Mexico, offering a hands-on, authentic experience inside a commercial space launch facility.

During the flight, passengers will experience about four minutes of weightlessness, and will be able to view the Earth from roughly 150,000ft (45,700m) u
First unveiled in 2008, the passenger plane is piggybacked to a high altitude by a larger plane
RELATED STORIES
Spaceport America launches multi-million dollar visitor experience


New Mexico’s Spaceport America – the first purpose-built commercial spaceport in the world – has launched a new experience tour and exhibition for its visitors as it looks to offset operational costs for the US$219m (€195m, £139m) facility.
Campbeltown confident about being named spaceport


Scottish community-owned airbase, Machrihanish Airbase in Campbeltown, is confident it is going to beat the other four shortlisted candidates to become the UK’s first spaceport in 2018.
Another step forward for space tourism plans


Britain’s ambitious space tourism are taken one step closer, after a three month consultation has shown widespread support for a UK spaceport.
Scotland dominates list of potential sites for UK spaceport


The UK’s bid to become a space tourism hotspot has taken a ‘giant leap’ forward, after the government unveiled eight coastal sites under consideration to host the country’s first spaceport – six of which are in Scotland.
MORE NEWS
Heartbreak for Swedish theme park, Liseberg, as fire breaks out
A fire has destroyed part of the new water world, Oceana, at Liseberg in Sweden, and a construction worker has been reported missing.
Museum director apologises after comparing the city of Florence to a sex worker
Museum director Cecilie Hollberg has come under fire for comparing the city to a sex worker due to uncontrolled mass tourism.
Populous reveals plans for major e-sports arena in Saudi Arabia
Populous have unveiled their plans for a state-of-the-art e-sports arena, designed to stand as a central landmark in Qiddaya City’s gaming and e-sports district, Saudi Arabia.
Raby Castle reveals ambitious plans to become a major visitor destination
Raby Castle, known as one of the finest medieval fortifications in England, is nearing the end of an ambitious two-year renovation project.
Wake The Tiger launches new 1,000sq m expansion
Wake the Tiger, the Bristol-based immersive art experience, is set to open its 1,000sq m expansion on Friday 2 February.
Merlin teams up with Hasbro and Lego to create Peppa Pig experiences
Merlin Entertainments, the LEGO Group and Hasbro have teamed up to create Peppa Pig experiences.
+ More news   
 
COMPANY PROFILES
Painting With Light

By combining lighting, video, scenic and architectural elements, sound and special effects we tell s [more...]
QubicaAMF UK

QubicaAMF is the largest and most innovative bowling equipment provider with 600 employees worldwi [more...]
ProSlide Technology, Inc.

A former national ski team racer, ProSlide® CEO Rick Hunter’s goal has been to integrate the smoot [more...]
Clip 'n Climb

Clip ‘n Climb currently offers facility owners and investors more than 40 colourful and unique Cha [more...]
+ More profiles  
CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

08-08 May 2024

Hospitality Design Conference

Hotel Melià , Milano , Italy
04-07 Nov 2024

Global Wellness Summit (GWS)

In person, St Andrews, United Kingdom
+ More diary  
 


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