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/MarsScientific.com)

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 […]

Planetary Resources offers a stretch goal to reinvigorate its crowdfunding campaign

Planetary Resources says its Arkyd-100 spacecraft can be used for exoplanet searches if it reaches a stretch goal of $2 million in its ongoing crowdfunding campaign.

Yesterday, asteroid mining company Planetary Resources announced a “stretch goal” for its ongoing million-dollar crowdfunding effort: if the company can raise at least $2 million, double its original […]

SpaceShipTwo’s first powered flight a success

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

The rumors were true this time. Early Monday morning, WhiteKnightTwo took off from the Mojave Air and Space Port with SpaceShipTwo slung between its twin fuselages. About 45 minutes after its 7:02 am PDT (1402 GMT) takeoff, WhiteKnightTwo released SpaceShipTwo, […]

Is Virgin Galactic ready for powered flight?

SpaceShipTwo and its contrail, created by a “cold flow” of nitrous oxide through its engine during an unpowered test flight on April 12. (credit: MarsScientific.com)

A successful glide flight Friday by SpaceShipTwo could be the final step before Virgin Galactic attempts what it calls “the most significant milestone” yet for the suborbital vehicle: powered […]

Virgin entering phase of “final confirmation firings” before first powered SpaceShipTwo flight

SpaceShipTwo, the suborbital vehicle under development by Virgin Galactic and its partner Scaled Composites, has been on the verge of beginning powered flights for a few months now, after performing a glide flight in a “powered flight configuration” in December. There’s been little news from Virgin since then, until a blog post today by Sir […]

From Liberty to Lynx (but not from New York to Tokyo)

XCOR Aerospace announced yesterday that it has issued a contract to ATK for the manufacturing of the wings and control surfaces of XCOR’s Lynx Mark 1 suborbital spaceplane. ATK is best known (in the space industry, at least) for its solid propellant motors, including the Solid Rocket Boosters (SRBs) used to launch the Space Shuttle. […]

Virgin and XCOR progress towards powered test flights

An image from Virgin Galactic of the liquid oxidizer tank being installed in SpaceShipTwo. (credit: Virgin Galactic)

The two companies in the lead to fly crewed suborbital spacecraft announced milestones earlier this week towards the beginning of powered flight tests of their vehicles. On Friday, Virgin Galactic released images of an oxidizer tank being […]