Australia markets closed
  • ALL ORDS

    6,940.60
    -165.10 (-2.32%)
     
  • ASX 200

    6,673.30
    -160.70 (-2.35%)
     
  • AUD/USD

    0.7708
    -0.0171 (-2.17%)
     
  • OIL

    61.66
    -1.87 (-2.94%)
     
  • GOLD

    1,733.00
    -42.40 (-2.39%)
     
  • BTC-AUD

    60,470.22
    -547.23 (-0.90%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    912.88
    -20.25 (-2.17%)
     
  • AUD/EUR

    0.6381
    -0.0083 (-1.28%)
     
  • AUD/NZD

    1.0651
    -0.0033 (-0.31%)
     
  • NZX 50

    12,227.29
    +86.63 (+0.71%)
     
  • NASDAQ

    12,909.44
    +81.13 (+0.63%)
     
  • FTSE

    6,483.43
    -168.53 (-2.53%)
     
  • Dow Jones

    30,932.37
    -469.64 (-1.50%)
     
  • DAX

    13,786.29
    -93.04 (-0.67%)
     
  • Hang Seng

    28,980.21
    -1,093.96 (-3.64%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    28,966.01
    -1,202.26 (-3.99%)
     

Virgin Galactic plans next rocket-powered test flight for February 13th

Jon Fingas
·Associate Editor
·1-min read

Virgin Galactic is ready to give SpaceShipTwo another shot after its last flight ended with a motor failure. The private spaceflight firm now expects to conduct its next rocket-powered test flight as soon as February 13th, with chances later in the month if that initial launch date isn’t an option. Pre-flight prep is already underway, including training for the VMS Eve host aircraft.

Not surprisingly, Virgin is eager to check the “remedial work” meant to address the December 12th failure. The flight will otherwise include all the tests that were intended for the previous flight, such as evaluating parts of the passenger cabin, livestreaming to the ground and verifying upgraded components like the horizontal stabilizers and flight controls.

More is riding on this launch than usual. The December mission was meant to be one of the first rocket-driven flights since February 2019, and one of the last tests before Virgin shifted its focus toward space tourism operations. If the company wants to carry paying customers relatively soon, it needs tests like this to complete without a hitch.