The departure is set for Sunday 11 July, at 3 pm, Italian time. Also on board the founder of the company, Richard Branson
The departure is set for 15 of tomorrow, July 11, Italian time. The first commercial flight of Unity, so it was renamed the SpaceShip Two rocket of Virgin Galactic, will bring between 80 and 100 kilometers from Earth two pilots and three other passengers, one of which is the founder of the company, the tycoon Richard Branson. A launch that beats by about ten days the one planned by Jeff Bezos for July 20 with the New Shepard of his Blue Origin and which will see on board the founder of the e-commerce giant Amazon, the brother Mark, one passenger still anonymous who paid for the ticket at auction more than 28 million dollars and the 82-year-old Wally Funk, a pioneer of the US air force that in the 60s was among the women of Mercury 13 who proved they could meet the criteria set by NASA to become astronauts.
To follow the live broadcast of the launch, you can connect to the website of Virgin Galactic, or to the social media profiles of the aerospace company (here the links to Twitter, YouTube e Facebook). As planned, the vehicle will describe an arc and for approx 4 minutes the passengers “Galleggeranno” like the astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) and then re-enter the atmosphere and land.
A real flight into space?
From Blue Origin argue that Branson will not be a real flight into space, because the vehicles of Virgin Galactic they do not cross the famous Kármán line, the imaginary threshold placed at a height of 100 kilometers beyond which the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale acknowledges that they have really gone to the space. On the other hand, Virgin Galactic is ahead of Blue Origin’s competitors also in terms of authorization. The company has already received theauthorization of the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the launch of passengers in the suborbital belt, while Blue Origin is still awaiting the green light to its activity. Let the space tourism race begin.