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Scaled Composites announced the first flight of its newly developed, experimental aircraft Model 401. The company produced two such aircraft for an undisclosed customer, to demonstrate advanced, low-cost manufacturing techniques and research flight services for the United States government. This successful first flight is the beginning of the flight test phase for vehicle number 1. The Scaled team plans to continue envelope expansion on the first aircraft as they move toward first flight of the second Model 401 vehicle.
Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo rocket plane crashed today when performing a test flight over California. The spacecraft was testing a new propellant on this flight.
Northrop Grumman is positioning its optionally piloted / unmanned FireBird as an operationally flexibly platform. The system has already demonstrated simultaneous operation of four EO sensors supporting multiple users.