SpaceShipTwo

SpaceShipTwo

SpaceShipTwo is the prototype for the world's first commercial manned spaceship, destined to take private astronauts into space and paving the way for space transportation.

WhiteKnightTwo

WhiteKnightTwo

Utilizing an open-architecture design and powered by four Pratt & Whitney turbofans, WhiteKnightTwo provides the high-altitude launch platform for SpaceShipTwo to achieve sub-orbital flight.

Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer

Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer

This record-breaking, single-place, aviation marvel features two external booms flanking a center pod where the pilot sits, on top of which is the aircraft's powerhouse, a Williams turbofan jet engine.

SpaceShipOne

SpaceShipOne

SpaceShipOne, the first private manned spacecraft, is a three-place, high-altitude research rocket, designed for sub-orbital flights at an altitude of 100 km and powered by a unique hybrid rocket motor.

White Knight

White Knight

Initially developed to provide a launch platform at 50,000 ft for SpaceShipOne, White Knight is a three-place, high-altitude, flexible and capable research aircraft.

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SpaceShipTwo Test Summaries

Flight Test Legend: GF = Glide Flight
P = Powered Flight
GC = Aborted Glide Flight

Flight: 170 / GF30
Date: 07 Oct 14
Flight Time: 10 min, 30 sec
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Sturckow
GS Crew: Ericson, Stucky, Tuck, Sorensen, Swetky, Jaster, Broughton, Robertson, Gajadhar, Nickolenko

Objectives:
SS2 proficiency

Flight: 164 / CF02
Date: 28 Aug 14
Flight Time: 13 min
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Tighe, Bourgeois, Turk, Smith, Glaser, Bassett, Swetky, Flynn, Kalogiannis, Baker, Forth, Broughton, Verderame, Nickolenko, Inks, Stephens, Withrow, Gajadher

Objectives:
In flight nitrous vent test
SS2 proficiency

Flight: 156 / GF29
Date: 29 Jul 14
Flight Time: 12 min
SS2 Pilot: Masucci SS2 CoPilot: Siebold
GS Crew: Nickolenko, Tighe, Bourgeois, Turk, Sorenson, Glaser, Swetky, Bassett, Jaster, Flynn, Broughton, Verderame, Robertson, Inks, Griffith, Forth

Objectives:
SS2 proficiency

Flight: 149 / GF28
Date: 17 Jan 14
Flight Time: 14 min, 12 sec
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Sturckow
GS Crew: Turk, Bourgeois, Colby, Sorensen, Glaser, Ward, Corda, Kalogiannis, Swetky, Tighe, Griffith, DiVenere, Inks, Story, Robertson, Diachun, Verderame, Broughton, Smith

Objectives:
EA checkride
VG pilot training

Flight: 147 / PF03
Date: 10 Jan 14
Flight Time: 12 min 43 sec
SS2 Pilot: Mackay SS2 CoPilot: Stucky
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Kalogiannis, Jaster, Verderame, Baker, Gould, Colby, Kroese, Flynn, Tighe, Diachun, Ward, Swetky, Griffith, Broughton, Inks, Story, Smith

Objectives:
VG pilot training
20 second burn
RCS evaluation
TPS evaluation

Results:
Successful demonstration of all flight phases of a spaceflight: rocket burn, pull to vertical, feather, and glide. What a great way to start 2014!

Flight: 145 / GF27
Date: 11 Dec 13
Flight Time: 12 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Masucci
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Verderame, Story, Robertson, Baker, Gould, Colby, Kroese, Smith, Tighe, Diachun

Objectives:
VG pilot training

Results:
Objective achieved.

Flight: 132 / PF02
Date: 05 Sep 13
Flight Time: 14 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Hunsaker, Knupp, Bassett, Kalogiannis, Jaster, Verderame, Prior, Cassebeer, Story, Baker, Zeeb, Gould, Colby, Withrow, Kroese, Flynn, Tighe, Siebold

Objectives:
Second powered flight
Supersonic aero expansion (20 sec burn)
Wing lift structural expansion
Feather up and down envelope expansion
CoPilot landing

Results:
Successful demonstration of all flight phases of a spaceflight: rocket burn, pull to vertical, feather, and glide. Initial data indicates that performance and flight characteristics are similar to expectations. Great job by the entire crew.

Flight: 131 / GF26
Date: 08 Aug 13
Flight Time: 10 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Mackay
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Corda, Kalogiannis, Verderame, Prior, Cassebeer, Baker, Gould, Colby, Kroese, Flynn, Tighe, Siebold

Objectives:
Pilot aircraft evaluation
Feather flight

Results:
Objectives achieved.

Flight: 130 / GF25
Date: 25 Jul 13
Flight Time: 11 min, 52 sec
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Mackay
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Bozarth, Verderame, Prior, Cassebeer, Story, Baker, Gould, Colby, Withrow, Tighe, Siebold

Objectives:
VG pilot training

Results:
Objective achieved.

Flight: 115 / PF01
Date: 29 Apr 13
Flight Time: 13 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Tighe, Shane, Bourgeois, Reid, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Bozarth, Gould, Colby, Zeeb, Morgan, Verderame, Keller, Cassebeer, Kalogiannis, Withrow, Kroese, Flynn

Objectives:
First powered flight
Launch weight expansion
Supersonic aero expansion (16 sec burn)
q structural expansion

Results:
Monday we “lit the candle” for the first time. SS2 control and handling was very positive during its first supersonic, rocket-powered flight. The motor operated as designed and provided a strong, yet surprisingly smooth, acceleration through the sound barrier. The boost was terminated at the intended shutdown duration of 16 seconds. Trajectory was nominal with Mike & Mark topping out at 1.3 Mach and 56,200 feet. Post shutdown glide was nominal. The vehicle and the team performed as expected – excellent! We'd like to thank our team, our many vendors, and the support of Virgin for making today a possibility. The fun has only just begun!

Flight: 114 / CF01
Date: 12 Apr 13
Flight Time: 10.8 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Tighe, Bourgeois, Reid, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Verderame, Keller, Cassebeer, Zeeb, Morgan, Gould, Colby, Kroese, Flynn, Shane

Objectives:
In flight nitrous vent test
Launch weight expansion
PF01 mission rehearsal

Results:
Objectives complete.

Flight: 113 / GF24
Date: 03 Apr 13
Flight Time: 9 min
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Tighe, Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Jaster, Bozarth, Verderame, Keller, Cassebeer, Zeeb, Gould, Colby, Withrow, Kroese

Objectives:
In flight nitrous vent test (on pylon)
Feather flight

Results:
Objectives complete.

Flight: 109 / GF23
Date: 19 Dec 12
Flight Time: 13 min, 24 sec
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Bourgeois, Glaser, Knupp, Bassett, Kalogiannis, Jaster, Zeeb, Gould, Binnie, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs, Verderame, Tighe, Withrow, Kroese

Objectives:
SS2 performance
Stability and control with new shortened aft skirt
Installed rocket motor systems and nozzle
Wing/strake Thermal Protection Systems (TPS)
PIO susceptibility evaluation with different flight control modes

Results:
Aero performance slightly better than expected and no negative issues identified. No PIO tendencies noted in loose formation flight. First co-pilot landing – congratulations Mike!

Flight: 93 / GF22
Date: 11 Aug 12
Flight Time: 8 min, 2 sec
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Binnie
GS Crew: Mackay, Jaster, Bozarth, Verderame, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs, Bourgeois, Glaser, Tighe, Bassett

Objectives:
Maximum glide flight mach and airspeed envelope expansion
Horizontal tail load expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved. With this latest round of six flights we have cleared the full glide-flight envelope for airspeed, angle-of-attack, CG, and structural loads!

Flight: 92 / GF21
Date: 07 Aug 12
Flight Time: 9 min, 52 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Colmer
GS Crew: Tighe, Bourgeois, Knupp, Bassett, Inks, Verderame, Kalogiannis, M. Fuchs, Glaser

Objectives:
Aft CG angle-of-attack expansion
Aft CG feather expansion
Heavy weight, aft CG landing

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 91 / GF20
Date: 02 Aug 12
Flight Time: 8 min    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Verderame, Kalogiannis, Bourgeois, Knupp, Tighe, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs

Objectives:
Feathered strake evaluation
Evaluate elevon dampers and rudder locks
Forward CG landing

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 90 / GF19
Date: 18 Jul 12
Flight Time: 10 min, 39 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Kalogiannis, Jaster, Verderame, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs, Bassett, Knupp, Reid, Bourgeois

Objectives:
Aft CG S&C strake evaluation
Airspeed expansion
Heavy weight landing


Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 88 / GF18
Date: 29 Jun 12
Flight Time 13 min    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot Mackay
GS Crew: Tighe, Bassett, Knupp, Bourgeois, Jaster, Bozarth, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs, Verderame

Objectives:
Strake evaluation
Pilot familiarization

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 87 / GF17
Date: 26 Jun 12
Flight Time 11 min, 22 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot Alsbury
GS Crew: Tighe, Bassett, Knupp, Bourgeois, Glaser, Jaster, Bozarth, Cassebeer, M. Fuchs, Verderame, Nichols

Objectives:
SS2 control surface flutter data collection
SS2 aero stability and control validation
RCS airborne functional test
Speed brake check
Frequency sweeps without dampers

Results:
All objectives achieved. Great return to flight!

Flight: SS2 Taxi 03
Date: 01 Jun 12
Time 3 hr on runway    
Crew (Runs 01-02): Siebold / Nichols / Mackay
Crew (Run 03) Alsbury / Siebold / Mackay
Crew (Run 04): Mackay / Siebold / Alsbury

Objectives:
Condition and evaluate the decelerating performance with the new higher capacity brakes.

Results:
We performed four tests from 30 to 65 mph with three different pilots. All objectives were achieved.

Flight: 73 / GF16
Date: 29 Sep 11
Flight Time 7 min, 15 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot Nichols SS2 FTE: Persall
GS Crew: Alsbury, Verderame, Kalogiannis, Vannoy, Glaser, Reid, Inks, Tighe, Bassett

Objectives:
Post maintenance functional check flight
Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Flutter expansion
Previous flutter point validation
Increased weight landing (using water ballast)
Pilot proficiency

Results:
Test card called for releasing the Spaceship from WhiteKnightTwo and immediately entering a rapid descent. Upon release, the Spaceship experienced a downward pitch rate that caused a stall of the tails. The crew followed procedure, selecting the feather mode to revert to a benign condition. The crew then defeathered and had a nominal return to base. Great flying by the team and good demo of feather system.

Flight: 68 / GF15
Date: 27 Jun 11
Flight Time 7 min, 39 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot Binnie
GS Crew: Tighe, Bassett, Inks, Verderame, Persall, Knupp, Zeitlin, Reid

Objectives:
Continued airspeed flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved. Dynamic pressure envelope further expanded.

Flight: 67 / GF14
Date: 23 Jun 11
Flight Time 7 min, 33 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot Nichols
GS Crew: Tighe, Verderame, Persall, Bassett, Glaser, Reid, Knupp, Inks

Objectives:
Continued mach and airspeed flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 66 / GF13
Date: 21 Jun 11
Flight Time 8 min, 55 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Tighe, Persall, Verderame, Bassett, Glaser, Reid, Knupp, Inks

Objectives:
Continued flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 65 / GF12
Date: 15 Jun 11
Flight Time 10 min, 32 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Bassett, Reid, Glaser, Binnie, Keller, Tighe, Inks, Kelley, Bozarth

Objectives:
Continued flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved. Second flight in 24 hours!

Flight: 64 / GF11
Date: 14 Jun 11
Flight Time 13 min, 18 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Shane
GS Crew: Nichols, Bassett, Kalogiannis, Reid, Glaser, Keller, Tighe, Inks

Objectives:
Flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 61 / GF10
Date: 25 May 11
Flight Time 10 min, 14 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Binnie
GS Crew: Nichols, Verderame, Bassett, Bozarth, Persall, Glaser, Inks, Tighe

Objectives:
Second feather flight
Evaluate feather configuration stability with nose strakes installed
Low altitude flutter envelope expansion
Shortened runway approach and landing validation

Results:
All objectives achieved. Much improved longitudinal dynamics in the feather configuration.

Flight: 60 / GF09
Date: 19 May 11
Flight Time 11 min, 32 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Binnie
GS Crew: Alsbury, Kalogiannis, Bassett, Reid, Glaser, Verderame, Tighe, Persall, Inks

Objectives:
Flutter susceptibility envelope expansion

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 59 / GF08
Date: 10 May 11
Flight Time 13 min, 2 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Shane
GS Crew: Alsbury, Tighe, Verderame, Persall, Bozarth, Reid, Glaser, Knupp, Inks

Objectives:
Flutter susceptibility testing
Pilot proficiency

Results:
All objectives achieved.

Flight: 58 / GF07
Date: 04 May 11
Flight Time 11 min, 5 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Tighe, Bassett, Verderame, Kalogiannis, Persall, Zeitlin, Glaser, Knupp, Cassebeer

Objectives:
Feather evaluation
Evaluate stability and control
Flutter susceptibility testing
Pilot proficiency

Results:
All objectives achieved....Awesome flight!

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.

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.

Flight: 47 / GF04
Date: 13 Jan 11
Flight Time 11 min, 34 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Kalogiannis, Verderame, Maisler, Persall, Bassett, Zeitlin, Reid, Tighe, Inks

Objectives:
Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Stall expansion
Continued flutter envelope expansion
Aft CG expansion with water ballast tank
Window heater evaluation
Pilot proficiency

Results:
All objectives achieved. Stall at aft CG. Evaluated flutter modifications to 250 KEAS. Envelope expanded to 3.8 g's. As part of the test objectives, the SS2 pilots vented water ballast just before coming in to land, which produced a visible contrail.

Flight: 45 / GF03
Date: 17 Nov 10
Flight Time 11 min, 39 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Nichols
GS Crew: Binnie, Persall, Knupp, Inks, Bassett, Y. Fuchs, Maisler, Verderame, Zeitlin

Objectives:
Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Stall expansion
Expand flutter envelope
Aft CG expansion with water ballast tank
Pilot proficiency

Results:
All objectives achieved. Flew to a more aggressive stall indication. Expanded envelope to 246 KEAS and 3.5 g's.

Flight: 44 / GF02
Date: 28 Oct 10
Flight Time 10 min, 51 sec    
SS2 Pilot: Stucky SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Binnie, Kalogiannis, Persall, Knupp, Inks, Bassett, Cassebeer, Story, Y. Fuchs, Maisler, Verderame, Kelley

Objectives:
Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Expand flutter envelope
Roll evaluation

Results:
All objectives achieved. Flew to more aggressive stall indication. Evaluated handling and stability through several maneuvers. Expanded envelope to 230 KEAS and 3g's. Roll evaluation. Full stop landing.

Flight: 41 / GF01
Date: 10 Oct 10
Flight Time 13 min    
SS2 Pilot: Siebold SS2 CoPilot: Alsbury
GS Crew: Binnie, Tighe, Bassett, Verderame, Keller, Kelley, Maisler, Knupp, Y. Fuchs, Moody, Inks

Objectives:
Clean release
Evaluate stability and control
Expand flutter envelope
Evaluate performance
Land

Results:
All objectives achieved. Very positive and controllable release from mothership at 46,000 ft. Slowed to first stall indication. Pilots evaluated the handling and stability through several maneuvers. Expanded envelope to 180 KEAS and 2g's. Evaluated performance with speed brake in and out. Full stop landing executed to the target aim point. Great flying airplane (spaceplane). We'd like to thank our team and all at Virgin who've enabled us to get back in the low aspect ratio glider business.

Test: SS2 Taxi 01
Date: 14 Jun 10
Time 3 hr on runway
Crew (Runs 01-04): Siebold / Nichols
Crew (Run 05) Stucky / Nichols


Results:
Monday was a great milestone for the team. We performed five tests from 25 to 60 mph with two different pilots. All objectives were achieved. They were: condition the brakes and evaluate the landing gear/brake steering/skid shoe performance and general ground handling. The vehicle performed as expected and we're excited to move into the manned phase of the test program.

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