NASA books 1st flight from New Mexico spaceport

Oct 14, 2011

(AP) -- NASA has booked a charter suborbital flight from Virgin Galactic's spaceport operations in southern New Mexico.

Virgin Galactic announced Thursday that the agreement calls for to charter a full flight from the company, and it includes options for two additional flights. If all options are exercised, the contract is worth $4.5 million.

Virgin Galactic says each mission allows for up to 1,300 pounds of .

Earlier this week, Virgin Galactic announced it hired former NASA executive Michael Moses as vice president of operations.

Virgin Galactic is owned by Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group and Aabar Investments PJS. It's on track to be the world's first commercial spaceline and hopes to launch its first flight within the next year from Spaceport America, about 50 miles north of Las Cruces.

Explore further: Mysteries of space dust revealed

5 /5 (5 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New Mexico to be site of spaceport

Dec 13, 2005

Officials from the London-based Virgin Galactic and New Mexico say they've signed an agreement to build a $200 million spaceport.

Space tourism craft reaches glide-test milestone (Update)

May 04, 2011

High over the Mojave Desert, the stubby-winged SpaceShipTwo bent itself into a near-right angle shape and plunged nearly straight downward for more than a minute before unfolding and gliding to a runway landing ...

Space tourism port to be sited in Abu Dhabi

Jul 28, 2009

Tourists will be able to journey to outer space via Abu Dhabi as part of a deal by a local investment group to take a stake in the world's first commercial space travel operator, the two companies said on ...

Recommended for you

Mysteries of space dust revealed

7 hours ago

The first analysis of space dust collected by a special collector onboard NASA's Stardust mission and sent back to Earth for study in 2006 suggests the tiny specks open a door to studying the origins of the ...

A guide to the 2014 Neptune opposition season

12 hours ago

Never seen Neptune? Now is a good time to try, as the outermost ice giant world reaches opposition this weekend at 14:00 Universal Time (UT) or 10:00 AM EDT on Friday, August 29th. This means that the distant ...

Informing NASA's Asteroid Initiative: A citizen forum

Aug 28, 2014

In its history, the Earth has been repeatedly struck by asteroids, large chunks of rock from space that can cause considerable damage in a collision. Can we—or should we—try to protect Earth from potentially ...

Image: Rosetta's comet looms

Aug 28, 2014

Wow! Rosetta is getting ever-closer to its target comet by the day. This navigation camera shot from Aug. 23 shows that the spacecraft is so close to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko that it's difficult to ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

rwinners
not rated yet Oct 15, 2011
Why does it sound like the US is subsidizing Branson's urges for immortality?
NotAsleep
not rated yet Oct 17, 2011
Because you must be a conspiracy theorist