Armadillo’s upcoming STIG vehicles, suborbital (and orbital) plans

Armadillo Aerospace's Stig rocket lifts off from Spaceport America earlier this year on its ill-fated flight. (credit: Armadillo Aerospace)

For a decade now Armadillo Aerospace has been working a variety of designs for suborbital vehicles, initially in pursuit of the Ansari X PRIZE and more recently for commercial and government business: the company has [...]

In-flight suborbital Internet access? Maybe not.

One of the nice things about flying on Virgin America (among some other airlines) is having access to the Internet in flight. On one of those long transcontinental flights, it’s great to make the time productive by having access to the web, email, and the like. But what if you’re making a quick trip into [...]

Jumping the gun

If you saw the news earlier this week, it might have sounded like that SpaceX’s plan to fly a Dragon Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) mission to the ISS this fall was a done deal. “The Hawthorne, Calif.-based private rocket maker said Monday its Dragon capsule will launch on Nov. 30 on a cargo test [...]

Boeing on test pilots, FAR-vs-SAA, and more

Last Thursday, as most expected, Boeing announced it had selected United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rocket to launch its CST-100 commercial crew vehicle, at least for a series of three test flights in 2015. (John Elbon, Boeing’s program manager for the CST-100, said that the company would recompete launches for the operational CST-100 missions, if [...]

Decision day for CST-100′s ride to orbit

Illustration of Boeing's proposed CST-100 commercial crew capsule.

Since unveiling its plans for developing a commercial crew spacecraft, Boeing has emphasized that its CST-100 spacecraft was launch vehicle agnostic: it could launch on an Atlas 5, Delta 4, or Falcon 9. And when ATK announced its plans in February for the Liberty launch vehicle, [...]