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Stratolaunch Completes Historic First Flight of Aircraft

14 Apr 2019, 19:30 UTC
Stratolaunch Completes Historic First Flight of Aircraft
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Stratolaunch Systems Corporation, founded by Paul G. Allen, on Saturday successfully completed the first flight of the world’s largest all-composite aircraft, the Stratolaunch. With a dual fuselage design and wingspan greater than the length of an American football field, the Stratolaunch aircraft took flight at 06:58 PDT from the Mojave Air & Space Port.Achieving a maximum speed of 189 miles per hour, the plane flew for 2.5 hours over the Mojave Desert at altitudes up to 17,000 feet. As part of the initial flight, the pilots evaluated aircraft performance and handling qualities before landing successfully back at the Mojave Air and Space Port.“What a fantastic first flight,” said Jean Floyd, CEO of Stratolaunch. “Today’s flight furthers our mission to provide a flexible alternative to ground launched systems. We are incredibly proud of the Stratolaunch team, today’s flight crew, our partners at Northrup Grumman’s Scaled Composites and the Mojave Air and Space Port.”The test team conducted standard aircraft testing exercises. Initial results from today’s test points include: Performed a variety of flight control maneuvers to calibrate speed and test flight control systems, including roll doublets, yawing maneuvers, pushovers and pull-ups, and steady heading side slips. Conducted simulated landing approach exercises at ...

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