The company had been carrying out test flights from Mojave, California - including the first successful launch of its rocket plane
into space last December.
As reported earlier, Virgin Galactic on February 22 blasted off a rocket plane
to the edge of space with a test passenger for the first time, getting the company closer to its goal of suborbital flights for space tourists.
That service is little different from the achievements of the X-15 rocket plane
featured in the recent Hollywood biopic of Neil Armstrong, First Man.
VIRGIN Galactic's rocket plane
reached space for a second time in a test flight over California on Friday.
LOS ANGELES -- Virgin Galactic's rocket plane
reached space for a second time in a test flight over California on Friday, climbing higher and faster than before while also carrying a crewmember to evaluate the long-awaited passenger experience.
A Virgin Galactic rocket plane
on Friday soared to the edge of space with a test passenger for the first time, nudging British billionaire Richard Branson's company closer to its goal of suborbital flights for space tourists.
After the rocket plane
reached an apogee of 51.4 miles (83 km) above Earth, a crying Branson high-fived and hugged spectators.
The VSS Unity is a SpaceShipTwo air-launched rocket plane
that has been designed specifically for commercial use.
If all goes according to plan, the carrier airplane will haul the SpaceShipTwo passenger rocket plane
to an altitude of about 45,000 feet and release it.
(Reuters) - A Virgin Galactic rocket plane
reached space on Thursday and returned safely to the California desert, capping years of testing to become the first US commercial human flight to breach Earth's atmosphere since America's shuttle program ended in 2011.
1947: Chuck Yeager in his Bell X-1 rocket plane
became the first man to break the sound barrier.
Initially focused on experimental aircraft called X-planes, flight research with the X-15 rocket plane
offered the opportunity to assist with the space mission of NASA.