Richard Branson: Virgin Galactic Expecting First Space Flight Before Christmas

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Multi-billionaire businessman, Richard Branson, revealed on Friday that the Virgin Galactic Company would be expected to make a breakthrough in spaceflight before Christmas. The entrepreneur said in an interview that the company was highly confident that 14 years of innovation and technical development has given it an opportunity to reinvent itself in the space exploration business. He attributed his confidence to the fact that major astronauts and scientists have invested resources in giving the Virgin Galactic space flight idea a major boost through constant testing and development.

According to the spaceflight program, as envisioned by the Virgin Galactic Company, the first few trips to space would be undertaken by test pilots until the company gains confidence that the space tourism idea is safe enough.

The Virgin Galactic space flight would be made possible by the SpaceShipTwo, a Galactic rocket-powered plane designed to accelerate to speeds of up to 2,300 miles per hour. SpaceShipTwo would be expected to launch into space from beneath the wings of Virgin Galactic’s mothership. Test pilots would, once in space, have an opportunity to test the SpaceShipTwo on various concepts including flight operations and safety mechanisms designed to make the Virgin Galactic space program as safe as possible.

Responding to questions, Richard Branson revealed that competitive forces including the Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin concept of flying into space has been a major contributory factor that has made him accelerate the Virgin Galactic space flight before the end of the year. Other market competitors such as Ellon Musk’s Space X that has been quite a success as far as making unmanned space trips around the earth is concerned.  The space tourism business is expected to generate much interest from billionaires around the globe, especially since NASA retired most of its spaceflight programs to the moon.

Virgin Galactic’s journey to a successful space flight has not been without extraordinary challenges, one of which was in 2014 when a test flight crashed killing one of the copilots. Despite the grave dangers of spaceflight, Branson and the company was able to recoup, motivated by the overwhelming support from enthusiastic customers who were willing to make advance payments in anticipation for a successful spaceflight in the future. Although the company has had many unsuccessful milestones in the past, Branson is optimistic that the present goal of launching a man into earth’s orbit would be a success.

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