We have Lift-Off

Congratulations Major Time Peake. The 128th Manned Soyuz launch was successful – Russian rocket technology, simple but effective (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it) and building up reliability and confidence. Low manned launch numbers eh?

(though they have carried out circa 800 unmanned Soyuz cargo launches as well. Space is Risky….)

Launch. Land. Repeat.

The very same Blue Origin New Shepard booster that flew above the Karman line and then landed vertically at its launch site last November has now flown and landed again, demonstrating reuse. This time, New Shepard reached an apogee of 333,582 feet (101.7 kilometers) before both capsule and booster gently returned to Earth for recovery and reuse.Launch. Land. Repeat.


Virgin Galactic – SS2 successful test flight

Congratulations to Virgin Galactic on their successful test of SpaceShipTwo’s engine; the vehicle achieved its first powered flight over Mojave today at 14:00 GMT after being dropped from WhiteKnightTwo at an altitude of around 45,000 ft.

Take a look at the BBC’s summation of the flight and the accompanying video here.

UK Space Agency – UK CAA Spaceplane Workshop

Andy is one of the UKSA-UKCAA Spaceplane workshop’s members whose aim is to     assist in developing the UK’s Suborbital Orbital Aircraft (SOA) Policy. Andy presented his findings from his PhD research on the subject in terms of the safety aspects of certification approaches. Additionally he presented his practical methodology for implementing the Policy.

Other members included the UKSA, UK CAA, Alan Bond (Reaction Engines), Andrew Nelson (XCOR), Stephen Attenborough (Virgin Galactic), Dan lewis (Economic Policy Centre), and Simon Wragg (Sulri Integration Ltd); Simon authored the initial paper for the 1st Spaceplane Workshop held in January.