More problems at Virgin Galactic?

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The story outlines what appear to significant problems at Virgin Galactic:

  • Some sources say the company has shelved LauncherOne in favor of a bigger launcher that would be deployed from the bottom of a 747, not WhiteKnightTwo.
  • The company however says LauncherOne is still under development.
  • The company admits that they recently had a LauncherOne test rocket engine explode during testing.

It appears that they have discovered that LauncherOne is not cost effective for meeting their contract with OneWeb to launch 39 satellites. It would only be able put up one satellite at a time. A more powerful launcher however would be too heavy for WhiteKnightTwo.

Thus, after 10 years of development, nothing they have built to date is useful for a profitable operation, and they apparently have to start over.


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