Virgin Galactic reveals futuristic outpost for space tourism
UPHAM, N.M. (AP) — Spaceport America is no longer just a shiny shell of hope that space tourism would one day launch from this remote spot in the New Mexico desert.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on advances toward space tourism by Virgin Galactic (all times local):
Virgin Galactic is not setting a launch date yet for its first...
The Latest: Tourism rocket ship reaches space on test flight
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on a test flight of Virgin Atlantic's space tourism rocket ship (all times local):
Virgin Galactic says its tourism spaceship has climbed more than 50 miles high, which the company considers the boundary of space.
Virgin Space Ship Unity was released from a carrier aircraft over California's Mojave Desert early Thursday and ignited its rocket engine.
The Latest: Virgin Galactic sending rocket to edge of space
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on scheduled test flight of a Virgin Galactic rocket ship (all times local):
Virgin Galactic plans to fly a rocket ship Thursday to the edge of space.
The company says two test pilots will fly the craft early Thursday above the Mojave Desert at an altitude of more than 50 miles (80.4 kilometers), which it regards as the boundary of space.
CEO George Whitesides says that's the standard used by the Air Force and other U.S. agencies.
New Mexico spaceport seeks taxpayer support for expansion
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The CEO of New Mexico's commercial spacecraft launch facility has stepped up pressure for more taxpayer support as lead tenant Virgin Galactic inches closer to its goal of flying tourists into the lower reaches of space.
Spaceport American CEO Dan Hicks said Monday that it's not realistic for the facility near the Army's White Sands Missile Range to be 100 percent financially self-sufficient.
Spaceport Colorado sells the future
AURORA, Colo. (AP) — There was a time we would have marveled at flying to 380,000 feet to experience the curvature of the Earth, weightlessness, and the darkness of space.
In the next few decades, space travel may become so ordinary that we don't even bat an eye. In Colorado that will be a reality thanks to Dave Ruppel, CEO of the newly-dubbed Spaceport Colorado.
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — Virgin Galactic's space tourism rocket plane VSS Unity soared over the Mojave Desert on its third powered test flight.
The company says the craft ascended Thursday at more than twice the speed of sound and reached an altitude of 32.3 miles (52 kilometers).
The spacecraft was taken aloft by the carrier aircraft VMS Eve and released at high altitude before the two test pilots ignited the rocket motor and pulled Unity into a near-vertical climb.
Wealthy space enthusiasts are paying $80,000 deposits to secure a spot in the solar system’s first-ever space hotel, which could accept guests starting in 2022.
Aurora Station, the brainchild of Orion Span based in Houston and Silicon Valley, sold four months of reservations within 72 hours of being announced last week. The modular space station would allow guests to float in zero gravity, grow food to take home as a souvenir and see 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours.
Houston, the city that put men on the moon, may put a hotel in outer space.
For $9.5 million — including an $80,000 upfront deposit — space tourists would be able to float in zero gravity, grow food to take home as a souvenir and see 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours aboard a modular space station that was announced Thursday during a California space summit. The first trip could come in just four years.
Virgin Galactic conducts 7th glide test of spacecraft
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — Virgin Galactic says the latest glide test of its space tourism rocket plane was a success, nearly reaching the speed of sound high over California.
The spaceship, named Unity, was carried aloft by its mother ship on Thursday and released over the Mojave Desert.
The so-called "space billionaires" Jeff Bezos, Richard Branson and Elon Musk imagine a day when people will live and work in space, gradually transforming humanity into a multi-planet species.
The next step in that direction is the development of a space tourism industry, and that's about to become a reality.
TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES — The concept of space tourism was all the rage when Spaceport America was pitched to New Mexico taxpayers a decade ago as a gateway for rich adventurers willing to pay $250,000 for a ride to the heavens. But as the state has waited year after year for the first of what were supposed to be regular flights into space from the nearly $220 million facility, people behind the program are reimagining it more as a hub for the commercial spaceflight industry rather than space tourism.
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — Virgin Galactic successfully conducted another unpowered test flight of its space tourism spacecraft over the Southern California desert, the company said.
The glide flight Thursday incorporated a special ballast tank filled with water at the rear of the rocket plane to check handling qualities with more weight on board and with the center of gravity shifted to the rear.
The vision of “space tourism” — wealthy civilians spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to blast off into suborbital space — that was the original selling point for Spaceport America in Southern New Mexico that has yet to materialize. But the facility’s new chief executive officer told legislators Friday that new business and activity is growing, and the spaceport is becoming less dependent on state funding.