Shotwell on launch delay, reusability, and other issues

The Falcon 9 rocket that will launch the next Dragon spacecraft late Sunday evening is shown in its hangar in a photo released by SpaceX earlier this month. This is the first Falcon 9 to feature landing legs on its first stage. (credit: SpaceX)

In this week’s issue of The Space Review, I write [...]

Year in PReview: is 2014 finally the year suborbital space tourism lifts off?

SpaceShipTwo during its first powered test flight on April 29, 2013. (credit: Virgin Galactic/

One decade ago, hopes were high for suborbital space tourism. Scaled Composites had performed the first powered test flight of SpaceShipOne in December of 2003, and other than a minor landing mishap, the company seemed to be on track for [...]

Skybox releases first images from its first satellite

An image of the Crown Perth entertainment complex in Perth, Australia, taken by the SkySat-1 spacecraft earlier this month. (credit: Skybox Imaging)

One of the more than 30 satellites launched on a Dnepr rocket from Russia last week was SkySat-1, the first satellite for Skybox Imaging, the Silicon Valley startup that plans a constellation [...]

Chris Hadfield: suborbital space tourism “not much of a space flight”

Chris Hadfield on the ISS in early 2013. In an interview, he wonders if some Virgin Galactic customers know about the limited spaceflight experience they’ll get. (credit: NASA)

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, who gained fame earlier this year for his social media outreach while serving on the International Space Station, is doing some interviews [...]

Next SpaceShipTwo powered test flight coming “very soon”

SpaceShipTwo flies on its second powered test flight on September 5. (credit: and Clay Center Observatory)

The next powered test flight of Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo suborbital vehicle is coming up “very soon,” a top company executive said at a conference Thursday, as some observers continue to speculate about the reasons for the extended [...]

Teasing a few clues out of Bezos and Blue Origin

Blue Origin’s PM2 suborbital experimental vehicle, shown here on a flight before being lost during a test flight in August 2011. (Credit: Blue Origin)

Blue Origin has developed a reputation over the years as a notoriously secretive company, only grudgingly releasing information about the company and its plans. While other companies hold high-profile events [...]

Falcon 9 launches

SpaceX Falcon 9 v1.1 lifts off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 12 noon EDT (1600 GMT) Sunday, September 29. (credit: SpaceX webcast)

As NASA was holding a press conference late this morning to discuss the successful berthing of the Cygnus spacecraft to the International Space Station, SpaceX was making its contribution [...]

Report: SpaceShipTwo to make second powered flight today

SpaceShipTwo during its first powered test flight on April 29, 2013. (credit: Virgin Galactic/

Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo suborbital vehicle will reportedly make its second powered test flight, and first in more than four months, on Thursday morning. Parabolic Arc, based on Mojave, reported Wednesday night on the expected test flight, with SpaceShipTwo and WhiteKnightTwo [...]

Virgin Galactic “gearing up” for second powered SpaceShipTwo flight

Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides speaking Friday at the DC-X 20th anniversary event at Spaceport America in New Mexico. (credit: J. Foust)

After a hiatus of more than three and a half months that has raised questions by some industry observers, Virgin Galactic is making preparations for a second powered test flight of its [...]

Waiting on SpaceShipTwo’s next powered flight

SpaceShipTwo lands at the Mojave Air and Space Port on Thursday, July 25, after a successful glide flight: the first flight for the vehicle since its initial powered flight nearly three months ago. (credit: Virgin Galactic)

The last few months have been eventful for Virgin Galactic. The suborbital spaceflight company announced last month that [...]