"You miss 100% of the [space] shots you don't take. - Wayne Gretzky" - Michael Scott Flight 2 and 3 on the floor. Let's take another shot. (via @Virgin_Orbit )
We’ve also been keeping in lockstep with our customers, finding the best options for them. With a clear path forward, we’re extremely excited to announce that our Launch Demo-2 mission will carry 11 nanosatellites for @NASA!
Learn more about the CubeSats on our ELaNa 20 mission launching aboard @Virgin_Orbit's LauncherOne for numerous universities across the country ✈️🚀 go.nasa.gov/3hZwMxJ
ELaNa 20Date: NET August 14, 2020Mission: Virgin Orbit, LauncherOne – Mojave, California10 CubeSat Missions scheduled to be deployedPolarCube - University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, ColoradoMiTEE - University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MichiganCACTUS-1 - Capitol Technology University, Laurel, MarylandQ-PACE - University of Central Florida, Orlando, FloridaTechEdSat-7 - NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CaliforniaRadFXSat-2 - Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TennesseeEXOCUBE - California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, CaliforniaCAPE-3 - University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, LouisianaPICS - Brigham Young University, Provo, UtahINCA - New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New MexicoELaNa 29Date: Q4 2020Mission: Virgin Orbit, LauncherOne – Anderson Air Force Base, Guam1 CubeSat Mission scheduled to be deployedPAN – Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
And away we go! As we mentioned in our early August blog, we wanted to get our next rocket out the door to Mojave for testing before the end of the month. This week, with both stages fully integrated, we did just that!
Like its predecessor, this rocket has been installed onto a test stand that simulates the conditions under Cosmic Girl's wing. At the same time, our launch techs are working on activating our mobile ground support equipment and getting it hooked up to the rocket.
Soon to come: cryo shocks, fuel loading exercises, procedure rehearsals and more! Once we've wrapped up those exercises, this LauncherOne will head back down to Long Beach for some planned hardware swaps — and then, it'll be time for Launch Demo 2.
Explanation for Renewal Application File Number TBDThe current license for QPACE, 0074-EX-CR-2020 expires Oct 30 2020. The launchhas slipped repeatedly, and the current plan is for the launch to occur no earlierthan Nov. 15, 2020. We request that a renewal license be issued to set the termof the license to cover the period from Nov. 1, 2020 to October 30, 2022.No changes are being requested for any terms of the license, other than theperiod of operation.
LAUNCH DEMO 2: OCTOBER UPDATEOCTOBER 14, 2020 Just three years after Virgin Orbit was born as a company, we took to the skies to conduct our very first Launch Demo with LauncherOne. During that demo, we proved out all of the key technologies for a new kind of launch technology: liquid-fueled air-launch. With the first launch just a few months behind us, we are now smartly driving down the path to Launch Demo 2, which our incredibly talented and determined team is targeting to complete before the end of the year.That’s a pretty quick turnaround by industry standards — so how’d we manage that? Well, the simple answer is that our second launch rocket was already in assembly when the first one flew, along with several other rockets in flow at our state-of-the-art rocket production facility. After all, one launch can make history, but it’s just the beginning. It takes a whole lot more to create a launch service.Our team has really risen to the occasion in recent months, doing the necessary work and driving forward at a best-in-industry pace — despite the unprecedented circumstances of a global pandemic that has changed everything about the way we all live and work.Recent MilestonesThe rocket we will use for Launch Demo 2 shipped out of the factory in late August. After making the short trip up to Mojave Air and Spaceport, that rocket was fitted to a test stand built to emulate Cosmic Girl’s left wing. There, our team hooked up our mobile ground support trailers and conducted a number of checkouts and tests, including fully loading the rocket with propellants like cryogenic liquid oxygen to verify the health of all rocket systems. The test was a major success, and the operation, which resembled a full countdown, benefited hugely from our operational refinements: completing cryo load was a much faster and much smoother process compared to the first time around earlier this year.We saw a similar quantum leap with the other build and test series we recently completed: the acceptance testing (ATP) campaign for our main stage (“NewtonThree”) engine. Main stage propulsion is a big task for any rocket and any launch, and given the knowledge that we gained from our first Launch Demo, this milestone took on even more importance. But we got through it extremely quickly: work that took us two months to complete just one launch ago was finished in just two weeks this past September.Our team is better prepared, our hardware is better manufactured, all of our procedures, scripts, and tools are in launch-ready shape — and all of that hard work is paying off big time.You can hear directly from our technical leaders on what we’ve been up to since our last flight:What’s Next?Today, both rocket and engine are back down in our Long Beach HQ for final integration. Our NewtonFour upper stage engine is already fully tested and installed, and our NewtonThree engine and a few other bits of flight hardware will join the party in the coming days. We’re preparing for the big move — packing up the rocket and the mobile trailers and transiting everything back to the “hammerhead” at Mojave Air and Space Port — a bare spot at the end of a taxiway (which is all we really require in a launch site). That’s where we’ll mate LauncherOne to Cosmic Girl’s wing just before we fly.Here’s a glimpse of all of the major campaigns we planned out in between our first Launch Demo in late May and our upcoming flight.As you’ll see, we are moving steadily forward. We’re not done yet, but every day brings more progress, and we’re keeping our nose to the grindstone so that we can maintain this momentum.This week, we’re taking another exciting step forward. Yesterday, for the first time in our company’s short history, customers arrived at our facility to begin processing their spacecraft for launch!Thanks to COVID-19 everything looks a little different than we’d imagined, to be sure. But we’ve worked with NASA and with our payload teams to find safe ways for teams to conduct this work in our beautiful new payload processing facility, called Nebula.While they’re on-site this week, we’ll work with each team to complete a final round of analysis and testing before finally integrating their payloads into the fairing. The fairing will then be shipped up to Mojave, where we’ll do the final mate to the rocket in our unique mobile cleanroom.Though our focus has been squarely on preparing for Launch Demo 2 and on welcoming our customers and their spacecraft, our other projects continue to make steady progress. Recently, we participated as the sole space launch provider in one of the biggest military training exercises of all time, demonstrating how a country could very quickly replace a satellite that had been interfered with by an adversary. We have also updated our Service Guide to better set up our customers for success as they plan their missions with LauncherOne. And in parallel to all of that, we’re also preparing the hardware we’ll use on the four flights that follow LD2.None of this work is ever easy — even in a normal world, much less in the odd world we’re all living in 2020. But the work is worth doing, and it can be done well with the right team, the right tools, and the right experience. We’re excited about what we’ve done, and fired up about what comes next. The team working hard to pull off our second Launch Demo prior to the holidays, and we’ll keep you all updated every step of the way.To stay in the loop, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram.
Just three years after Virgin Orbit was born as a company, we took to the skies to conduct our very first Launch Demo with LauncherOne.
With the first launch just a few months behind us, we are now smartly driving down the path to Launch Demo 2, which our incredibly talented and determined team is targeting to complete before the end of the year.That’s a pretty quick turnaround by industry standards.
QuoteJust three years after Virgin Orbit was born as a company, we took to the skies to conduct our very first Launch Demo with LauncherOne.I take issue with this as it's deliberately misleading. The LauncherOne project was announced in 2012 at the Farnborough International Airshow and the advanced projects/liquid propulsion teams were in full swing. They opened up the Long Beach HQ in 2015 and started rapidly staffing up shortly after. It wasn't until 2017 that the group was officially severed from Virgin Galactic. It took them 8 years to make their orbital attempt, not 3 years like they're trying to imply here.QuoteWith the first launch just a few months behind us, we are now smartly driving down the path to Launch Demo 2, which our incredibly talented and determined team is targeting to complete before the end of the year.That’s a pretty quick turnaround by industry standards.Given how optimistic every schedule they've presented has been, I'd be surprised if it was by the end of the year. They should hold off on patting themselves on the back for the turnaround until they've actually finished the job.
This has been VG's and VO's MO since day one.
Quote from: meekGee on 10/15/2020 02:31 pmThis has been VG's and VO's MO since day one.Definitely true for VG, but less so for VO. The major slips on that program came from a substantial redesign as they moved from pressure fed engines to pump fed engines, as well as from WhiteKnightTwo to Cosmic Girl, or right after Dan Hart was hired and he decided to expand the test/analysis requirements.After their flight in May and quick turnaround on the root cause, I full expected their second attempt to be around now; worst-case end-of-year. With them saying end-of-year, I'm now curious how much extra work there is to do that isn't being conveyed and would be surprised if they launch by February.
@BYU's first #satellites, the Passive Inspection CubeSats, are officially installed into @Virgin_Orbit LauncherOne release system. We're beyond excited to see our hard work come to fruition as our satellites get launched and perform their mission! @byu_flu@NASA
The Passive Inspection CubeSats Mission is to snap some pictures of LauncherOne's upper stage after it released them and they float away. They'll also be capable of capturing 360° VR images in space!#cubesats #collegeengineering #space #collegelife #engineering #electronics #vr
Customers for our upcoming Launch Demo 2 mission recently made the trip out to Long Beach to get their payloads checked out and integrated into our rocket. #ICYMI, read our latest blog for a big update on where we are on the road to our next flight: virg.in/amQ
https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/1321492151973367808QuoteCustomers for our upcoming Launch Demo 2 mission recently made the trip out to Long Beach to get their payloads checked out and integrated into our rocket. #ICYMI, read our latest blog for a big update on where we are on the road to our next flight: virg.in/amQ