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Virgin Galactic SpaceShip Two Test Flight Hits Mach 1.43

by Shane McGlaun

We’ve been suckers for space travel around here for a long time. My secret goal is to one day make enough money to afford a ticket aboard Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip Two. Unfortunately, tickets for suborbital flights are insanely expensive, but it would be so cool to take one of those flights.

virgin_galactic_spaceship_two_1

Before anyone can climb on board the SS2 and head into orbit, the aircraft has to pass a number of flight tests. Virgin Galactic recently conducted another flight test in which SS2 was able to reach an altitude of 69,000 feet and a speed of Mach 1.43. SS2’s previous best was 55,000 feet and Mach 1.2.

The test flight happened at 8 AM local time in the California Mojave Desert this past Thursday. This marks the second time SS2 has had a successful supersonic flight using its rocket engine. The latest flight saw the hybrid rocket engine burn for 20 seconds, twice the time it was powered up during the first flight.

[via C|NET]




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