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  • Air chief Bhadauria flies sortie in HAL's trainer aircraft:-Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria on Thursday undertook a sortie in the basic trainer aircraft HTT-40 here, thereby becoming the first serving Chief of Air Staff to fly in the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited developed aircraft at the prototype stage....
  • Screening process for selection of crew for Gaganyaan being done professionally: IAF chief:-Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria, has said the screening process for the selection of crew for ISRO's proposed humanspace flight programme-Gaganyaan-is being done professionally. ...
  • Centre inks pact with Goa Shipyard for two missile frigates:-The Centre has signed a contract with the Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) for construction of two advanced missile frigates for the Navy, Union Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik has said....
  • India, US begin first tri-services exercise:-In reflection of growing congruence in bilateral defence ties, armed forces of India and the US on Wednesday began their first tri-services exercise on the Eastern seaboard. The nine-day humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) exercise code-named 'Tiger Triumph' is aimed at developing inter-operability between the militaries of the two countries in HADR operations....

Virgin Galactic's VSS Enterprise makes maiden test flight

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Virgin Galactic VSS Enterprise First Flight over Mojave, CA. A Virgin Galactic photo

WASHINGTON (BNS): Virgin Galactic's VSS Enterprise, the world's first manned commercial spaceship, has successfully completed the captive carry flight from Mojave Air and Spaceport.

The Space vehicle made a 2-hour, 54-minute flight on Monday attached to the wing of its carrier aircraft, the WhiteKnightTwo, according to a media report.

"This very first captive carry was a huge success and both the mothership and spaceship looked absolutely stunning against the blue back drop of the Mojave skies," a company statement said.

The VSS Enterprise test flight programme will continue through 2010 and 2011, progressing from captive carry to independent glide and then powered flight, prior to the start of commercial operations, it added.

The spaceship has been designed to take many thousands of private astronauts into space. The vehicle could carry up to 6 passenger astronauts and up to 2 pilot astronauts into space on a sub-orbital flight.

Virgin Galactic plans to start flying customers aboard the craft on a regular basis after completion of up to 100 test flights.

According to designers, the spaceship will take passengers to an altitude of 110 km (68.3 miles) after being dropped from its carrier at an altitude of about 50,000 feet (16 km).

The 2.5-hour flight will feature a five-minute period of weightlessness, when passengers will be able to release themselves from their seats and float around the cabin.

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