Please consider donating by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below.
Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:
If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
Cortaro, AZ 85652
You can also support me by buying one of my books, as noted in the boxes interspersed throughout the webpage. And if you buy the books through the ebookit links, I get a larger cut and I get it sooner.
According to a Reuters story today based upon anonymous sources within the company, Stratolaunch is about to cease operations.
The key quote from the article:
As of April 1, Stratolaunch had only 21 employees, compared with 77 last December, one of the four sources said. Most of the remaining employees were focused on completing the carrier plane’s test flight.
The decision to set an exit strategy was made late last year by Allen’s sister, Jody Allen, chair of Vulcan Inc and trustee of the Paul G. Allen Trust, one of the four people and the fifth industry source said. Jody Allen decided to let the carrier aircraft fly to honor her brother’s wishes and also to prove the vehicle and concept worked, one of the four people said.
If true, this is hardly a surprise. The company was never able to find a viable path to orbit. It had built a spectacular plane, but could not find a rocket for that plane to launch.