From the photos it's a miracle that one person survived.
Both Virgin Galactic and Scaled Composites have vowed to continue the private exploration of space after Friday's crash that destroyed SpaceShipTwo, claimed the life of one pilot, and severely wounded another. SpaceShipTwo SpaceShipTwo at takeoff this morning "Space is hard, and today was a tough day. We are going to be …
Indeed. I remember one rare event when the human cost of the Russian space programme became clear. When the Buran flew in 1988, there were official awards given to the project crew. While Soviet News were usually quite good in "damage mitigation" on that occasion they forgot to remove the black ribbon off half of the photographs of the test pilots (more than half of the awards were given post-mortem).
Hard to tell from two pics if the craft broke up or the motor blew. Either way, I'm surprised even one crewman survived it. When things go to hell at that speed and altitude, it's bad news.
Both men are in my thoughts tonite. I'll silently raise one to salute the fallen co-pilot and also the injured man.. This is terrible news.
And there are always people ready for the "die trying" parts, always people who would risk their life to be the first to succeed.
The longest journeys begin with the first step
Their lives are not given in vain, and they are definitely braver than the other sheep in the flock who mock their failures but profit from their successes
RIP their brave souls
Ever since we have been going "up", we have done so by attaching a craft of some sort to a bloody great rocket. What rockets are and what they do mean that they are significantly less reliable than, say, aircraft engines. Just the other day (after the other rocket failure), people there were trying to downplay the problem by suggesting that a one in twenty failure rate was not unexpected. As we have seen in both cases this week, when they fail they fail dramatically.
This makes me wonder - are there any up and coming forms of propulsion that are likely to be powerful enough to defeat gravity, that don't depend upon an atmosphere, and aren't an attempt to control an explosion?
" What rockets are and what they do mean that they are significantly less reliable than, say, aircraft engines. "
Didn't you know that Branson is the 'Green Saviour of the Universe'?
He gets told it everyday by politicians et al who stay on one of his islands.
We ain't that sort of 'green'.
The best thing on the horizon is probably a space elevator. I would say that would still be 30-50 years away. Unless something magical happens with carbon nanotubes in the next 5-10 years then we will all probably be OAP's by the time a relatively safe method of commercial space flight becomes available.
I would probably hope to take some sort of space flight in my retirement, so that 30-50 years would fit in to my time frame.
The wing feather system deployed prematurely during boost instead of re-entry. The resulting adverse air loads on the stabilizers caused them to break off and the ship started to tumble, you can see it going backwards in one picture with the stabilizers detached. This is also why the stabilizers are located some distance away from the main wreckage.
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