Virgin Galactic set to unveil its new passenger rocket

Virgin Galactic set to unveil its new passenger rocket

Space tourism looks set to blast off again as Virgin Galactic looks set to announce a new rocket. Sir Richard Branson’s new Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo could be back in the air soon as the company pushes ahead in the race to send passengers into space.

Virgin Galactic suffered a major set back last year when its rocket broke apart over the Mojave desert killing pilot Mike Alsbury.

A probe by the National Transportation Safety Body found the crash was caused by a catastrophic structural failure triggered when the co-pilot unlocked the craft’s braking system early.

Designed to take thrill-seekers into space, seats on the ride, which can carry six passengers at a time, will cost $250,000 with more than 700 people said to have signed up for the journey.

Sir Richard said people “expect companies like Virgin to push forward” and that after Friday’s unveiling, rigorous testing will take place over the next 12 months.
[AP]

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