Virgin Galactic sets prices for travel to space on a rocket-powered aircraft

Virgin Galactic, Successful under-orbit test flight on July 11 Founder Richard Branson boarded the company’s winged rocket-powered aircraft and resumed ticket sales for space vehicles on Thursday. Starting at $ 450,000 per seat.

However, Virgin Galactic CEO Michael Colglazier made two more test flights of the company’s VSS Unity spaceplane, significantly upgrading the Virgin’s Eve carrier jet to improve durability and time between flights, and then 2022. He said no full commercial flight was planned until the third quarter of the year. ..

Although commercial operation will start a few months later than expected, the results of two pilot test flights earlier this year are as follows: Branson’s July 11th Space TripShow that the company is approaching “complete its test flight program in 2010 and launch commercial passenger services,” Colglazier said.

Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson is floating within the company's VSS Unity spaceplane during a test flight to the edge of space in orbit on July 11.  Virgin announced Thursday that a commercial launch carrying paid customers is expected to begin in the third quarter of next year.  / Credit: Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson is floating in the company’s VSS Unity spaceplane during an in-orbit test flight on July 11. Virgin announced Thursday that a commercial launch carrying paid customers is expected to begin in the third quarter of next year. / Credit: Virgin Galactic

“And as we move toward that goal, we are excited to announce today that we will soon begin selling tickets to an important list of early raisers. Space.”

He said Virgin “developed a range of products with a purpose to satisfy the various ways people wanted to share this experience.”

“For private astronaut flights, our products include single-seat, multi-seat couples, family and friend packages, and full-flight buyouts,” he said. “Prices for this next phase of private astronaut sales start at $ 450,000 per seat. Microgravity research and professional astronaut training flights remain at $ 600,000 per seat. is.”

More than 600 space enthusiasts paid a down payment for their flights very early in the program when tickets were thought to be close to $ 250,000 per seat. The prices announced on Thursday will probably only apply to new customers.

It is not yet known how the “Early Hand Lasers” will be dealt with, but Kolglazier has promised to prioritize the waiting list to give them an early flight.

“We’re not just watching history make, we’re making it happen together,” Virgin said. Tweet.. “Thank you for participating in this journey into the next era of space travel. Please visit our website to stay up to date and keep up with future ticket information.”

We not only see history being made, but we are making it happen together. Thank you for participating in this journey into the next era of space travel. We encourage you to visit our website to renew and register for future ticket information.

— Virgin Galactic (@virgingalactic) August 5, 2021

Virgin Galactic is competing with Blue originTo sell in-orbit flight to the edge of space, owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, to wealthy space travelers, the National Space Agency, and research institutes. Both companies will also launch automated or human-intended microgravity research payloads.

Virgin Galactic has launched four pilot test flights. The latest flight was on July 11th, when VSS Unity Spaceplane made its 22nd flight overall, with Branson, two pilots and three office workers flying over 50 miles at altitudes recognized by the FAA. did. NASA as the “boundary” between the universe and the identifiable atmosphere.

Blue Origin launched more traditional New Shepard rockets and capsules in 14 test flights without pilots, all successfully, sending passengers, including Bezos, to the sky for the first time on July 20.

Two more New Shepards are planned for launch later this year, both of which are likely to have paid customers. The ticket price for Blue Origin has not been disclosed.

Virgin is planning its next flight, Unity 23, in late September, stopping for months with Italian Air Force personnel, upgrading Eve’s carrier jets to improve durability and increase flight duration. Shorten. At the same time, the company plans to begin flight tests on another spaceplane, VSSImagine.

“Eve expects to complete the enhancement program around mid-2022,” said Kolglazier. “At the beginning of the third quarter, Imagine will start (gliding) flight tests, and Unity 24 will fly all the crew of the mission specialist to ensure that the adjustments inside the cabin are working as planned. Confirm. Q3. “

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