The space tourism company Virgin Galactic has hopes of sending their first customers to space next year.
On Tuesday, Virgin Galactic revealed a newly designed spacecraft.
The innovative, sleek new spacecraft has a reflective coating, which got called the ‘mirror-like effect by the company, and they say that it will add to the space experience of the tourists.
This summer, they expect the test flights of this new vehicle to begin, as they announce in a press release.
At the first look, this SpaceShip III looks much like the SpaceShipTwo.
SpaceShip Two is a vehicle that has been in testing for more than ten years by Virgin Galactic.
However, the SpaceShip III, the updated version has gotten designed to get manufactured more easily and be long-lasting. The company has a goal of flying a total of 400 trips each year to suborbital space using this updated version.
Nonetheless, the company is still testing its SpaceShipTwo, names VSS Unit. In May, they will have the next trial after its already successful trails that happened in December.
After 20 years of developing it and years of missing deadlines, the company Virgi Galactic says that they expect to fly British Billionaire and the company founder Richard Branson into space this year before they open it to the public.
The home base of the company is in New Mexico, where more than $200 million got paid for a glitzy spaceport using taxpayer money and is now been 10 years since it’s waiting for Virgin Galactic to start its business there.
The company has had to face many years of delays in its developments for many reasons like, technology hangups, a crash that killed a test pilot in 2014, and now the Covid-19 pandemic.
The company said that they had to delay the December test flight because the VSS Unity onboard motor computer lost connection.
According to the New Yorker staff writer Nicholas Schmidle, in 2019, during a test flight, Virgin Galactic faces a potentially dangerous safety hazard.
According to the post, the company sent a safety probe to analyze why the seal of the space plane wing has become undone, which risked the loss of three crew members’ lives and the vehicle. It got deemed to be successful because no harm got done.
In May 2019, Virgin Galactic finally movies to the New Mexico facility.
The building got refurbished by the company to add a lounge and other amenities.
So far, they have gotten around $200,000 to $250,000 each for the reserving of seats, where people will be able to use it before the journey to space.
According to Virgin Galactic, it has around 600 customers so far, and the company might reopen the tickets on sale soon.
However, expect the new tickets to be anywhere around or more than $250,000, which is more than the price of a median home in the United States.