Virgin Galactic May Attempt a Rocket-Powered Test Flight Next Week

It's the first rocket-powered Unity test from its new Spaceport America New Mexico base.
Virgin Galactic May Attempt a Rocket-Powered Test Flight Next Week
Image credit: Virgin Galactic via engadget

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
1 min read
This story originally appeared on Engadget

Virgin Galactic plans to do the first rocket-powered test flight of its VSS Unity spacecraft from its freshly christened Spaceport America facility in New Mexico as early as next week, the company announced. It could launch as soon as December 11th, and would be the first rocket-powered Unity flight since it took a passenger to the edge of space in February, 2019.

So far in New Mexico, Virgin Galactic has conducted Unity glide tests after drops by the carrier plane Eve, but no rocket-powered ones. It had planned to start rocket tests a bit earlier between November 19-23, but those dates were pushed back due to the COVID-19 crisis.

The flight team has a number of objectives in mind, “including testing elements of the customer cabin as well as assessing the upgraded horizontal stabilizers and flight controls during boost,” Virgin wrote in a press release. The ship will also carry research payloads, including three from NASA’s Flight Opportunities Program, following a contract award by the US space agency.

More from Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur Select: A Fund For Entrepreneurs, By Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs require more than just money, which is why we aim to empower you, as well as act as a catalyst for value creation.

Discover the franchise that’s right for you by answering some quick questions about
  • Which industry you’re interested in
  • Why you want to buy a franchise
  • What your financial needs are
  • Where you’re located
  • And more
Whether you want to learn something new, be more productive, or make more money, the Entrepreneur Store has something for everyone:
  • Software
  • Gadgets
  • Online Courses
  • Travel Essentials
  • Housewares
  • Fitness & Health Devices
  • And More

Latest on Entrepreneur