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Thursday, September 8, 2016

SpaceShipTwo Update: VSS Unity's Flight Test Program Begins Today...

VSS Unity rides under the belly of White Knight II during Unity's first captive carry flight, on September 8, 2016.
Virgin Galactic

A few hours before NASA was to launch its OSIRIS-REx spacecraft on a 7-year voyage to and from asteroid Bennu today, Virgin Galactic achieved the long-awaited milestone of bringing SpaceShipTwo back to flight status following the tragic events of almost two years ago. VSS Unity, the successor to the ill-fated VSS Enterprise, embarked on a captive captive flight via its mothership, White Knight II (a.k.a. VMS Eve), above California's Mojave Desert. VSS Unity remained attached to VMS Eve during the whole test. The day will soon come when Unity fires up its rocket engine to begin the climb to suborbital altitude for the first time...and thus resume Virgin Galactic owner Richard Branson's bid to bring paying customers to the edge of space and back. We're rooting for you, Unity.

VSS Unity is attached to the underbelly of White Knight II at The Spaceship Company in California's Mojave Desert, on September 8, 2016.
Virgin Galactic

White Knight II lifts off from The Spaceship Company to begin VSS Unity's first captive carry flight, on September 8, 2016.
Virgin Galactic

An onboard camera showing White Knight II and VSS Unity soaring high above California's Mojave Desert, on September 8, 2016.
Virgin Galactic

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