Timing of next Virgin Galactic flight still up in the air

Virgin Galactic on Friday postpone plans to make one other try at a rocket-powered flight from New Mexico to the perimeter of area, saying it wanted extra time for technical checks.

The area tourism enterprise mentioned in a social media publish that its crew at Spaceport America can be working to establish the subsequent alternative to maneuver the testing program alongside because the promise of economic flights continues to loom.

The final try in December was lower quick when laptop bother prevented the spaceship’s rocket from firing correctly. As a substitute of hovering towards area, the ship and its two pilots have been compelled to make a right away touchdown by gliding again all the way down to the runway on the desert outpost in southern New Mexico.

Over the previous week, preparations for the most recent try included installing the rocket motor into the spacecraft and checking the operation of a feathering system that slows and stabilizes the craft because it re-enters the ambiance.

The spacecraft additionally was secured to the provider airplane that can fly it to a excessive altitude, the place will probably be launched so it might hearth its rocket motor and make the ultimate push to area.

The flights are designed to succeed in an altitude of a minimum of 50 miles (80.5 kilometers) earlier than the rocket motor is turned off and the crew prepares to reenter the ambiance and glide to a touchdown.

Preparations for the subsequent flight additionally included loading payload belonging to NASA aboard the six-passenger ship.

Whereas the flight window for the check would have opened Saturday, Virgin Galactic has mentioned there might be alternatives to fly all through February pending its readiness and climate situations. A storm system is predicted to maneuver throughout New Mexico this weekend, bringing with it frigid temperatures and snow in lots of areas.

Virgin Galactic has reached area twice earlier than—the primary time from California in December 2018. In June, Virgin Galactic marked its second profitable glide flight over Spaceport America.

The corporate has but to announce a agency date for its first business flight.

Virgin Galactic is one of some corporations seeking to money in on prospects with an curiosity in area. Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin firm in January launched a new capsule as part of test because it goals to get its program for vacationers, scientists {and professional} astronauts off the bottom.

‘Lost connection’ hampers Virgin Galactic’s test flight (Update)

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Timing of subsequent Virgin Galactic flight nonetheless up within the air (2021, February 12)
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