Sunday, 14 April 2019

The World's largest plane' lifts off for the first time...Stratolaunch takes to the skies as the commercial space age dawns

The first flight of the giant Stratolaunch                                 photo Stratolaunch Systems Corporation
The World’s largest aircraft took to the skies over the Mojave Desert on Saturday, April 13th for the first time during an uneventful test flight.

The powerful, impressive six-engine jet built by Stratolaunch Systems Corporation, which was founded by Paul G. Allen, also co-founder of Microsoft, successfully completed its first flight, staying airborne for two and a half hours at the weekend. During the flight test the worlds first all-composite aircraft reached its maximum speed of 189 miles an hour and climbed to around 17,000 feet.

“What a fantastic first flight,” said Jean Floyd, CEO of Stratolaunch. “Today’s flight furthers our mission to provide a flexible alternative to ground-launched systems. We are incredibly proud of the Stratolaunch team, today’s flight crew, our partners at Northrup Grumman’s Scaled Composites and the Mojave Air and Space Port.”

Photo Reuters

The aircraft features a twin-fuselage design and has a wingspan greater than the length of an American football field, and is designed to be a mobile launch platform that will enable airline-style access to space that is convenient, affordable and routine. The reinforced centre wing area can support multiple launch vehicles, weighing up to a total of 500,000 pounds.

“We all know Paul would have been proud to witness today’s historic achievement,” said Jody Allen, Chair of Vulcan Inc. and Trustee of the Paul G. Allen Trust. “The aircraft is a remarkable engineering achievement and we congratulate everyone involved.”

Photo Reuters

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