What time is the Virgin Galactic launch? How can I watch it? Everything you need to know
Richard Branson’s commercial spaceflight company – Virgin Galactic – has its first launch today.
Despite commercial billing, this flight will carry crew from the Italian Air Force and Italy’s National Research Council, along with a Virgin Galactic astronaut instructor, for a science mission.
If successful, it will pave the way for paying customers to take their seats on subsequent Virgin Galactic flights.
So when is the launch? And how can you watch it?
Virgin Galactic is Richard Branson’s commercial aerospace company, which has been in operation since 2009
Galactic 01 is a crewed research mission from the Italian Air Force and the National Research Council of Italy together with a Virgin Galactic astronaut instructor
The project plans to take on paying customers in August if this flight is successful
What time will Virgin Galactic launch?
Galactic 01 launches at 4pm BST – 8am PT and 11am ET – on Thursday, June 29.
The flight should last 90 minutes, during which the plane would reach an altitude of 80 km above the earth.
The crew plans to conduct 13 experiments, exploring biomedical thermo-fluid dynamics and microgravity.
- Colonel Walter Villadei
- Pantalone Carlucci
- Lieutenant Colonel Angelo Landolfi
- Colin Bennett – astronaut instructor
How can I watch the Virgin Galactic launch?
Virgo Galactic will stream the launch on their website.
The launch begins with an aircraft carrier carrying the passengers to an altitude of 15 km before the smaller craft will break free.
The passenger plane is launched from an aircraft carrier at 15 km, before ascending independently to an altitude of 80 km
What is Virgin Galactic?
Virgin Galactic is Richard Branson’s commercial aerospace company, which has been in operation since 2009.
Their flights are different from SpaceX and Blue Origin, which perform dramatic vertical rocket launches just like NASA.
If today’s one is successful, Galactic 01 could pave the way for tourists going to space on other Galactic flights later this year.
The plane has to hang in place for five minutes to allow passengers to experience gravity, and the fantastic view of both space and Earth from the series of windows in the roof and sides of the plane.
When is the next Virgin Galactic flight?
After Galactic 01’s mission today, the first flight with tourists is scheduled for August.
Galactic 02 has not yet marked a specific date, but will take place early this month.
According to the company’s website, flights are expected to operate once a month from then on, though they hope to expand their flight schedule within the first year.