May 22, 2015

Weight on Wheels for the second SpaceShipTwo

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As hinted in our May 4th update, our team in Mojave has now completed an important milestone in the process of assembling and integrating the second SpaceShipTwo: on May 21st, the second SpaceShipTwo was lowered onto its own landing gear for the first time.

Now that we’ve achieved Weight on Wheels, as this milestone is known in the aerospace industry, the team can press forward with key activities such as the final installation of the vehicle’s avionics and other electrical systems. The work that remains before we can paint the vehicle and roll her out of the hangar to start testing will be easier now that vehicle now can support itself.  Although there’s still much work to be done, this was a powerful and emotional moment for our team to reflect on how far we have come.

Of course, we couldn’t have done this without the dedication and brilliance of the women and men who make up our team at The Spaceship Company (usually just called “TSC”), our manufacturing wing. We are incredibly proud of this crew, and grateful for their steadfast efforts to help us open up space. In the words of Doug Shane, the President of TSC, “we’re very happy with our team and with the progress we have made so far in building our new spaceship. They’ve put an incredible amount of thought, care, and attention to detail into building this beautiful new vehicle. We know there is a lot of work still in front of us, but we feel a deep sense of pride about how far we’ve come.”VG Group Shot2web.jpg