Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo Roars Through Second Supersonic Flight

On Sept. 5, 2013, Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo was released from its carrier aircraft and proceeded to conduct its second supersonic flight. Photo Credit: Mars Scientific / Clay Center Observatory

At 8 a.m. PDT, over the deserts of Mojave, Calif., Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo (SS2), ferried aloft by the WhiteKnightTwo (WK2) carrier aircraft, was released, […]

ATK to Provide Solid Rocket Motors for Stratolaunch System

Image Credit: Stratolaunch Systems

Utah-based ATK has received a contract from Orbital Science’s Corporation to produce propulsion systems for the Air Launch Vehicle (ALV) that Orbital is building for Stratolaunch Systems Corporation. It is hoped that this new delivery system will have a positive impact on providing access to orbit.

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A Brief History of Spaceplanes

Spaceplanes are not a new concept, having been thought up years before the space age even began. Image Credit: NASA

A spaceplane is quite simply a vehicle that can fly as both an airplane in the atmosphere—generating lift from its wings—and as a spacecraft in a vacuum using rocket propulsion. No spaceplane has […]

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo Ignites Engine, Thunders Through Sound Barrier

Photo Credit: MarsScientific.com / Clay Center Observatory

Virgin Galactic activated SpaceShipTwo’s (SS2) rocket motor for the first time in flight Monday morning, sending the space plane supersonic and paving the way for customers to fly into space.

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SpaceShipTwo Conducts Glide Test

Photo Courtesy of Bill Deaver

SpaceShipTwo conducted a successful glide test yesterday at the Mojave Air and Space port in Mojave, Calif. Lifted into the air a little after 7 a.m. local time, SpaceShipTwo was carried into the sky, released, and landed around 8:40 a.m. PDT, according to a report on the website […]

Report: Lack of Adequate Precautions Caused Accident That Killed Three During SpaceShipTwo Test

Photo Credit: The Spaceship Company

In July 2007, a test of a hybrid nitrous oxide-fueled rocket engine that Scaled Composites planned to use on its SpaceShipTwo space plane failed. The resulting explosion killed three and injured three more. The California Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or Cal/OSHA, has released its investigation report which […]