On Saturday June 4, Blue Origin successfully performed its fifth manned flight and the 21st flight for the New Shepard program.
The astronaut crew included: Evan Dick, Katia Echazarreta, Hamish Harding, Victor Correa Hespanha, Jaison Robinsonand Victor Vescovo.
“It was an honor to pilot this special crew of explorers and true pioneers today,” said Phil Joyce, Senior Vice President, New Shepard. “Thank you to the entire New Shepard team for your tireless work and dedication to this program. Each mission is an opportunity to give six others the life-changing experience of witnessing the beauty and fragility of our planet from space. It’s a step towards realizing our vision of millions living and working in space for the benefit of Earth..”
Original posting of pre-flight news…
pristine orbit (Nasdaq: VORB) has entered flight readiness mode for the company’s next launch, Directlywho will support the United States Space Force’Mission STP-28A. After leaving Virgin Orbit’s Long Beach Rocket Factory on Thursday, April 28, 2022, the rocket arrived at the Mojave Air and Space Port. He will support the Rocket Systems Launch Program (RSLP) and will carry payloads for the defense department (DoD) Space test program (PLS).
Integration testing with aircraft and ground equipment will take place, followed by a full launch rehearsal and final docking to the custom 747 that serves as Virgin Orbit’s flying, fully reusable launch pad and mobile mission control room. Launch is slated for June 29 at the earliest.. The launch window is expected to open at 8 p.m. local time, which marks the first night mission for the responsive launch company. The target orbit is approximately 500 km above the Earth’s surface at an inclination of 45 degrees – an orbit no other system has reached from the west coast.
Playing a key role in the launch of Straight Up will be the National systems in virgin orbit team, which developed and provided services to the national security community, focused on defending and protecting the United States and its allies through Virgin Orbit’s responsive space capabilities. To date, Virgin Orbit has launched three consecutive successful launches, including eight DoD Science and Technology demonstrations on two flights.
“Virgin Orbit has been soaring ‘straight’ since we began commercial launch operations 18 months ago“said the CEO of Virgin Orbit, Dan Hart. “Increasingly, we are seeing the importance of space to the security of the United States and allied nations. We are honored and committed to supporting Space Force at this critical time..”
Marc Bairdpresident of the new National systems in virgin orbit (Previously VOX space) added, “We believe this launch will demonstrate the significant maturation and operationalization of a unique capability. I’m glad to see straight up, wheels up.”
The US Space Force procured this launch for the Rocket Systems Launch Program (RSLP), with payloads provided by the DoD Space Test Program (PLS). The launch will carry seven satellites from multiple government agencies that are experiments intended to demonstrate new modular satellite bus, space domain awareness and adaptive radio frequency technologies. The Straight Up launch will support the United States Space Force’s STP-28A mission. The STP-28A launch contract was awarded to Virgin Orbit National Systems in April 2020 by the United States Space Force.
The company’s fully mobile LauncherOne system will perform the flight from what is currently a bare concrete slab at the Mojave Air and Space Port in California. The target orbit is about 500 km. above the Earth’s surface at a 45 degree inclination