WK2 looks ready to go to New Mexico

Flightglobal.com reports that WhiteKnightTwo has completed two more test flights in recent days, which appear to clear the way for the aircraft to make its first long-distance flight on Friday to fly over the groundbreaking ceremonies for Spaceport America in New Mexico. A one-hour test flight on June 11th (as noted in the flight logs) was monitored by the FAA, giving pilot Pete Siebold a type rating on the aircraft. A ninth test flight on Monday, not yet in the logs, apparently was planned to be the highest yet, approaching altitudes of 50,000 feet (15,000 meters). [Update: according to the flight logs, this was a 7.5-hour flight that reached 52,400 feet (16,000 m).]

Assuming all went well with that flight, WK2 would seem to be ready for Friday’s groundbreaking ceremonies at Spaceport America in southern New Mexico. (A WK2 flyover is included in the schedule “contingent upon weather and aircraft test flight schedule conditions”.) Right now weather shouldn’t be an issue, with a forecast of mostly sunny skies and highs of 90-95°F.

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