SpaceShipTwo photos

I finally got around today and posted a selection of photos I took of the SpaceShipTwo event Thursday at Wired NextFest in New York on Flickr. There’s a mix of pictures of the cabin itself (including one of me trying out one of the seats) as well as the people there, including Richard Branson, Will [...]

Ansari back on Earth

The Soyuz TMA-8 spacecraft carrying Anousheh Ansari and two astronauts landed safely late Thursday in Kazakhstan, and Ansari appeared to be in good condition as she emerged from the capsule after landing; her husband, Hamid, was on hand to greet her. I have not seen much about her near-term post-landing plans, although she is reportedly [...]

RpK’s new COTS partner

Rocketplane Kistler (RpK) announced today that is has signed an agreement with Andrews Space, with the latter company taking over the role in RpK’s COTS program that had previously planned to go to Orbital. As you may recall, Orbital announced on Monday that it was backing out of plans to take on the role of [...]

One SS2 picture

One picture from this morning’s event: Richard Branson gives two thumbs up sitting in one of the chairs in the SS2 cabin mockup. Note the “view” outside the porthole.

SpaceShipTwo event notes – early edition

I’m sitting in the Javits Center in New York right now, having attended the Virgin Galactic press conference earlier this morning (right now over 10,000 students are here from around the city attending the education day of Wired NextFest, which runs through this weekend.) At the press conference Richard Branson and other Virgin Galactic officials [...]

Jim Benson’s new gig

The Wall Street Journal reported in this morning’s issue that Jim Benson, founder of SpaceDev, is creating a new space tourism-oriented startup, Benson Space Company (BSC). (The Journal requires a subscription, but you may be able to read the article for free here). Benson is stepping down as chairman and CTO of SpaceDev to start [...]

Preparing to say farewell

Around this time tomorrow Anousheh Ansari will no longer be on the station, having joined Pavel Vinogradov and Jeffrey Williams on the Soyuz spacecraft that will take them back to Earth; landing is scheduled in Kazakhstan at approximately 9:10 pm EDT Thursday. In the meantime, Ansari speaks about the joys of weightlessness and the benefits [...]

Virginia is for space tourists?

That’s the suggestion of Jack Kennedy, a Virginia attorney, in an op-ed in the Roanoke Times this week. Looking at the boom in commercial spaceports in the US and elsewhere, he believes that the state is missing an opportunity to get involved by using an existing spaceport, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS), co-located with the [...]

SpaceShipTwo mockup (of sorts) in New York

If you’re going to be in New York this weekend, or in easy traveling distance, you may want to check out the Wired NextFest at the Javits Center, which will feature, among others exhibitors, Virgin Galactic. While some reports indicate that Virgin Galactic will be displaying a full-scale mockup of SpaceShipTwo, the company itself indicated [...]

Tuesday Ansari updates

Anousheh Ansari continues her blogging (or pseudo-blogging or whatever you want to call it), discussing life on the station and watching the Earth from the station. The best part,” however, she notes, “and by far my favorite view up here is the view of the universe at night. The stars up here are unbelievable… [...]