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Fraser
2004-Oct-04, 04:43 PM
SUMMARY: SpaceShipOne flew to space Monday morning, for the second time in less than a week. This time, though it came back down $10 million richer, taking the Ansari X-Prize. Pilot Brian Bennie guided the suborbital spacecraft to an altitude of more than 114 km (368,000 feet) after taking off from the Mojave Spaceport in California. Today's flight was completely smooth, without the terrifying series of barrel rolls at the highest point. Monday's flight was so high that it even beat records set by NASA's X-15 aircraft 40 years ago.

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

StarLab
2004-Oct-04, 06:02 PM
WOO-HOO!
:lol: :P

wstevenbrown
2004-Oct-04, 06:27 PM
Ditto.
Door is now open to competitive (cost-effective) civilian space flight. If we live long enough, the price will become low enough. :P

Duane
2004-Oct-04, 06:45 PM
Grats to Rutan and the Space Ship One crew! I only wish DaVinci could have sent theirs up once between the two flights (sigh).

What an excellent example of a reasonably well thought out idea coming to fruition.

alloydhoyt
2004-Oct-04, 07:48 PM
Now we have to keep the momentum moving forward. I'm glad that the orbital prize has been posted ($50 million) it will not only keep the other 24 contestants going but maybe add a few more.

Interesting - - - today was also the 47th anniversary of the sputlink launch.
:)

lswinford
2004-Oct-04, 08:15 PM
Sputnik today too? Fascinating, I wonder if it was a coincidence (I bet not).

damienpaul
2004-Oct-04, 09:59 PM
you bloody ripper!!!! :D :D

kashi
2004-Oct-04, 11:53 PM
Yeah that's great news! Any plans for X-prize 2? How about $500 million for the first private orbital spaceflight?

antoniseb
2004-Oct-05, 12:04 AM
Originally posted by kashi@Oct 4 2004, 11:53 PM
How about $500 million for the first private orbital spaceflight?
It's $50 million for that. It must be done by December 31st 2010, and get up to seven passengers to an orbital outpost and back.

Here's a link to a story on this:
Bigelow Prize (http://www.space.com/missionlaunches/bigelow_spaceprize_040927.html)

Greg
2004-Oct-05, 04:49 AM
Impressive.
Perhaps this is the dawn of a new age of space flight.

tycho
2004-Oct-05, 08:41 AM
but bigelow prize (if it be wons of course) is a Shuttle/Soyuz killer :ph34r: \

but always good :lol:

Willy Logan
2004-Oct-05, 02:45 PM
I knew Burt Rutan and his team could do it. He's a genius. Now we just need the other teams to get their hardware flying to keep this competitive and not just make it another monopoly like it's always been. I'm just curious how he'll use the prize money, since something like $20 million has already been spent on the project. Big bonuses for everyone on his team? Or will he invest it into something new?

-Willy

spacer123
2004-Oct-08, 09:16 PM
Did any of you space junkies see the Discovery Channel feature of Spaceship One? I'm amaze at Burt Rutan's long term vision of space flight (his computer graphics of Tier 2 and beyond). As I understand, Spaceship One is only part of his vision (Tier 1). The Tier 2 vision with Spaceship Two and all the concept features is so surreal. Lots of risk involved, but my goodness! If anyone can pull this off, I suppose he can. It almost makes me cringe how much tax money have been wasted by multiple cancellations and projects by NASA. Countless billions of dollars... and Rutan's project costing around 20-25 mill. I'm not knocking NASA, guess you can't blame them for having to follow strict regulations.

pulsar8472
2004-Oct-09, 04:14 PM
Since the x prize was 10 million then a y prize for low earth orbit should a least be 100 million and the z prize should be a billion for ???? your choice

Marion
2004-Oct-09, 05:39 PM
If this space tourism eventually becomes a regular thing, how will the safety and health standards be regulated? Private enterprise always does a better job of things than government, but you've got complete anarchy if a government regulatory body doesn't supervise it somehow. Possible environmental issues too, such as where do the tourism organizations build their launchpads?

Other businesses such as the drug industry have to face government regulation to ensure a safety standard. It can't be avoided with space tourism either.

Guest
2004-Oct-10, 12:45 AM
I believe the private space industries doesn't want too much regulation during these early phase of space tourism. I don't blame them, but the regular uninterested person shouldn't suffer without compensation if for some reason a mishap experimental spaceplane ends up on top of him. If there's too much regulation, this will kill the early phases of space tourism. Wouldn't blame them either if they moved their projects to another country who is willing to take risks for the benefit of progress (without harming their own country).

Greg
2004-Oct-10, 06:41 AM
Pushing the envelope is always a risky business. Some of the earliest and bravest aviation pioneers never returned. Amelia Earhardt for one. Yet with strict govenrmental regulayions she probably would never have gotten off the ground.