Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Tagged: Virgin Galactic

  • Virgin Galactic merges with Social Capital Hedosophia

    Cullen DesforgesJuly 10th, 2019

    In an unprecedented move for the commercial space flight industry, Virgin Galactic (VG) and Social Capital Hedosophia (SCH) have announced a merger which is expected to become effective once the transaction closes this year.

  • SpaceShipTwo flies to space with 1st ‘test’ passenger

    Derek RichardsonFebruary 22nd, 2019

    Three new people are set to get their astronaut wings as Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo performed a second flight into space on a suborbital trajectory.

  • Virgin Galactic has two freshly-minted astronauts

    Jason RhianFebruary 11th, 2019

    The private space industry chalked up yet another win with the announcement that a recent SpaceShipTwo test flight earned two pilots their astronaut wings.

  • SpaceX not alone in 2018’s high launch rate

    Patrick AttwellJanuary 7th, 2019

    United Launch Alliance (ULA), Northrop Grumman, Rocket Lab and Virgin Galactic conducted 14 launches from the United States this past year.

  • VSS Unity conducts test flight that nearly reaches space

    Jason RhianDecember 13th, 2018

    Virgin Galactic's program designed to kick off space tourism has just reached another milestone with a flight that almost reached the edge of space. 

  • Gallery: Thursday’s rocket-powered flight sees VSS Unity break Mach 2

    Jason RhianJuly 27th, 2018

    MOJAVE, Calif. -- In a span of less than four months, Virgin Galactic's VSS Unity has carried out three "rocket-powered" supersonic flights. The most recent test took place on Thursday, July 26, 2018. 

  • Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity could be just months away from 1st space flight

    Lloyd CampbellJune 21st, 2018

    Following a successful second supersonic test flight of the Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic spacecraft could be on the verge of becoming the first privately funded spacecraft to carry humans into space since SpaceShipOne some 14 years ago.

  • VSS Unity conducts first powered flight

    Jason RhianApril 5th, 2018

    The SpaceShip Company, using its VSS Unity spacecraft, successfully completed the vehicle's first supersonic, rocket-powered test flight on Thursday, April 5. Piloted by Mark “Forger” Stucky and Dave Mackay, today's flight marked the first flight since the October 31, 2014 accident that saw the loss of the VSS Enterprise.

  • SpaceShipTwo conducts successful test flight

    Paul KnightlyJanuary 13th, 2018

    Virgin Galactic conducted a successful test flight of the SpaceShipTwo, VSS Unity vehicle on Thursday, Jan. 11. The high-speed glide test marks the seventh for VSS Unity, which reached a top speed of Mach 0.9 during the flight.

  • Our SpaceFlight Heritage: SpaceShipOne, Government Zero – 13 years later

    Jason RhianJune 21st, 2017

    It was a heady time for the emerging NewSpace movement, Scaled Composites had sent Mike Melvill in SpaceShipOne on flight 15P up 62 miles into space. This set the stage for them to win the Ansari X-PRIZE and from there send the first tourists on suborbital hops. Or, so they hoped. Thirteen years later, the follow-on vehicle, SpaceShipTwo, has yet to send a single tourist to sub-orbit.

  • Virgin Galactic VSS Unity passes feather test

    Bart LeahyMay 2nd, 2017

    After successfully completing three glide-and-land tests at Mojave Air and Spaceport, Virgin Galactic conducted its first test of the “feather” mechanism on its second SpaceShipTwo (SS2) suborbital tourism spacecraft.

  • Virgin Galactic continues to test LauncherOne engine

    Lloyd CampbellFebruary 21st, 2017

    Last week, Virgin Galactic continued to test the first stage engine of its air-launched LauncherOne. The NewtonThree (N3) engine recently completed a long-duration test at full thrust.

  • Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo successfully completes first glide flight

    Curt GodwinDecember 4th, 2016

    Fresh off the completion of its successful captive carry flight just a few days prior, Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo (SS2), christened VSS Unity, took the next step in its flight certification regime by completing its first solo glide flight on Dec. 3, 2016.

  • Virgin Galactic conducts captive carry flight of SpaceShipTwo

    Jim SharkeyDecember 1st, 2016

    On Wednesday, Nov. 30, Virgin Galactic conducted the fourth test flight of its SpaceShipTwo rocket plane VSS Unity. The carrier aircraft, WhiteKnightTwo VMS Eve, took off with VSS Unity from the runway of Mojave Air and Spaceport at 2:07 p.m. PST (22:07 GMT).

  • Video: The first captive carry test of VSS Unity

    Derek RichardsonSeptember 23rd, 2016

    Virgin Galactic recently released a video discussing the path traveled in getting VSS Unity ready for flight testing. This video, titled "Elevating Unity – Episode 1: Captive Carry", showcases The Spaceship Company and Virgin Galactic preparing for and conducting the first captive carry test the vehicle.