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Virgin Galactic updates (Factory)


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#1 DocM

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 04:22

Posted Image

3 openings. Virgin Galactic's "essentials" for applicants.

Line starts on the right ;)

Cosmic Log Link....

• U.S. citizenship (to satisfy export regulations).

• A current FAA commercial (or equivalent) pilot license and FAA medical clearance.
Degree-level qualification in a relevant technical field.

• Graduate of a recognized test pilot school, with at least two and a half years of postgraduate flight test experience.

• Diverse flying background with a minimum of 3,000 hours flying, to include considerable experience of large multi-engine aircraft and high-performance fast jet aircraft and low lift-to-drag experience in complex aircraft.

• Operational experience in an aerospace aviation project or business.

• Preference given to those with experience in spaceflight, commercial flight operations or flight instruction.




#2 Unix2

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 06:01

Who will be the first guinea pig? :laugh:

#3 OP DocM

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 11:32

SS2 has a crew of 2, so the first powered full flights will come from their existing staff of test pilots. That's supposed to happen later this year.

#4 OP DocM

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Posted 22 April 2011 - 23:07

SS2 tests have resumed -

Flight: 56 / GF05
Date:22 Apr 11
Flight Time: 14 min, 31 sec
SS2 Pilot: Siebold
SS2 CoPilot: Shane
GS Crew: Binnie, Kelley, Bassett, Tighe, Reid, Keller, Verderame, Maisler, Zeitlin

Objectives:

Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Continued flutter envelope expansion
Pilot proficiency

Results:

Clean release at desired altitude. Glide test objectives complete without issues.



#5 OP DocM

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Posted 28 April 2011 - 05:02

This flight was a lot longer than the last one (higher altitude?), so maybe they're getting near the end of glide flights & close to powered flights.

Flight:    57 / GF06

Date:    27 Apr 11   
Flight Time:    16 min, 7 sec
SS2 Pilot:   Stucky   
SS2 CoPilot:   Alsbury
GS Crew:   Binnie, Kelley, Bassett, Tighe, Reid, Glaser, Inks, Verderame, Maisler, Knupp

Objectives:

Evaluate stability and control
Continued flutter envelope expansion
Pilot proficiency

Results:

Clean release at desired altitude. Glide test objectives complete without issues.



#6 OP DocM

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 03:13

Aviation Week article.....

Discusses the speeding up of glude tests, flight envelope expansion etc.

Interesting is that SS2's RocketMotorTwo (RM2) is also being used (in pairs) in Sierra Nevada's Dream Chaser orbital spaceplane. They are made by SpaceDev, a Sierra Nevada subsidiary.

#7 OP DocM

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Posted 04 May 2011 - 20:14

First test of SS2's feathered re-entry wing configuration -

Posted Image

OnOrbit article....

Early on Wednesday 4th May 2011, in the skies above Mojave Air and Spaceport CA, SpaceShipTwo, the world's first commercial spaceship, demonstrated its unique reentry 'feather' configuration for the first time.

This test flight, the third in less than two weeks, marks another major milestone on the path to powered test flights and commercial operations.
>
All objectives for the flight were met and detailed flight data is now being analysed by the engineers at Scaled Composites, designers and builders of Virgin Galactic's sub-orbital spacecraft.
>
Once out of the atmosphere the entire tail structure of the spaceship can be rotated upwards to about 65o. The feathered configuration allows an automatic control of attitude with the fuselage parallel to the horizon. This creates very high drag as the spacecraft descends through the upper regions of the atmosphere. The feather configuration is also highly stable, effectively giving the pilot a hands-free re-entry capability, something that has not been possible on spacecraft before, without resorting to computer controlled fly-by-wire systems. The combination of high drag and low weight (due to the very light materials used to construct the vehicle) mean that the skin temperature during re-entry stays very low compared to previous manned spacecraft and thermal protection systems such as heat shields or tiles are not needed. During a full sub-orbital spaceflight, at around 70,000ft following re-entry, the feather lowers to its original configuration and the spaceship becomes a glider for the flight back to the spaceport runway.
>



#8 OP DocM

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Posted 04 May 2011 - 23:20

Follow on report from VG -

Flight Test Legend:

GF = Glide Flight
P = Powered Flight
GC = Aborted Glide Flight

Flight: 58 / GF07
Date: 4 May 11
Flight Time: 11 min, 5 sec
SS2 Pilot: Siebold
SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Tighe, Bassett, Verderami, Kalogiannis, Persall, Zeitlin, Glaser, Knupp, Cassebeer

Objectives:

Feather evaluation
Evaluate stability and control
Flutter susceptibility testing
Pilot proficiency

Results:

All objectives achieved....Awesome flight!



#9 neoadorable

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Posted 05 May 2011 - 14:00

kudos to them, but how high did they go?

#10 OP DocM

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 00:06

Around 52,000 ft. Not a re-entry test, that would be >200,000 ft, but a test of handling and systems.

#11 neoadorable

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 13:22

yeah that's not even close to the Karman line...so i guess there's still work to be done.

#12 OP DocM

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Posted 06 May 2011 - 17:37

Engine tests have gone very well, which is also good for Dream Chaser since it's the same RM2 motor. Powered flights should start this summer; short burns at first then progressively longer until they're at full flight profiles. Scaled is very methodical, as they should be.

#13 neoadorable

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 15:01

guess the slow and safe route does make sense, yes. hopefully it gets results sooner rather than later, though.

#14 OP DocM

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 21:54

Big hint at an IPO

Satellite Spotlight story....

http://careers.virgin.com/search/1993/

Chief Financial Officer

Location: Pasadena, CA
Business: Virgin Galactic
Salary: Competitive
Contract Type Full Time
Closing date: 23/05/2011

IF YOU DON’T SEE DON’T SEE THE NEXT AUDIT AS THE FINAL FRONTIER…

Virgin Galactic, the flagship project for Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group is inviting applications for its first CFO who will join the leadership team as this unique and exciting business heads into commercial operations as the world’s first commercial spaceline.

Based on the X Prize winning SpaceShipOne, Virgin Galactic’s prototype commercial vehicles are built and flying successfully in an extensive test flight program, before moving to the near completed Spaceport America in New Mexico.

Virgin Galactic also has more than 430 customers paid up and waiting to fly and closed a deal with its first external investor in 2010 valuing the company at around $900m.

Located in the company’s current HQ in Pasadena CA and reporting to the CEO, the Virgin Galactic CFO will be responsible for engineering the financial strategy, driving growth, and formalizing the business structure as well as overseeing finance, accounting, IT, and HR functions. In order to apply you will probably have had previous CFO experience and an exposure to the aerospace sector. You will be confident in leading a capital raising process, either in the form of a private placement or initial public offering. You’ll be comfortable building influential relationships with key stakeholders including board members, investors and suppliers

In another life (and in a galaxy far, far away) you will have worked for one of the Big 4 and be up to speed with IFRS and UK GAAP.

Lastly you will thrive in a friendly but dynamic, international, high growth environment.

Competitive compensation and benefits package; Salary dependent upon experience

Please send your resume to Emma Sacknoff at (esacknoff@mpexecutivesearch.com) or call +1 212 661 4800 by Monday 23rd May referencing "Galactic CFO" or upload your details here.



#15 guru

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Posted 18 May 2011 - 23:07

Virgin Galactic has tested the return capabilities of their SpaceShipTwo spacecraft for the first time. The video of its first feathered flight is just too beautiful and elegant to describe.


http://gizmodo.com/5...ks-just-awesome