Highlights From Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic Flight

nytimes.com

A seat on one of the company’s spaceships originally cost $200,000 . The company later raised the price to $250,000 . It then stopped sales after a crash during a test flight in 2014. When the company resumes sales later this year, the price will probably rise again, said Michael Colglazier, Virgin Galactic’s chief executive.

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safety risks

The Virgin Galactic design already has an imperfect safety record. The company’s first space plane, the V.S.S. Enterprise, crashed during a test flight in 2014 when the co-pilot moved a lever too early during the flight, allowing the tail booms to rotate when they should have remained rigid. The Enterprise broke apart, and the co-pilot, Michael Alsbury, was killed. The pilot, Peter Siebold, survived after parachuting out of the plane.

The controls were redesigned so that the tail booms cannot be unlocked prematurely.

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