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SFS News: Virgin Galactic Mothership To Fly Over Las ...

Posted by: Klaus Schmidt - Sat Jun 20, 2009 8:50 am
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SFS News: Virgin Galactic Mothership To Fly Over Las ... 
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Post SFS News: Virgin Galactic Mothership To Fly Over Las ...   Posted on: Sat Jun 20, 2009 8:50 am
LAS CRUCES, NM, (Spaceport America) – Virgin Galactic's WhiteKnightTwo vehicle is expected to fly over the Las Cruces International Airport at around 9:30 AM on Saturday, June 20. The aircraft was originally scheduled to fly over Southern New Mexico on Friday as part of the groundbreaking ceremonies for Spaceport America. Due to a minor technical issue with an actuator, WhiteKnightTwo made a technical stop in Phoenix. Due to approaching thunderstorms, it was decided not to move forward on Friday.

Weather permitting, the WhiteKnightTwo is expected to arrive around 9:30 AM and circle the Las Cruces International Airport three times before beginning its return trip to Mojave, California.

The flight of the WhiteKnightTwo is the culmination of groundbreaking events planned around Friday's formal groundbreaking for Spaceport America, the world's first purpose-built commercial spaceport. Spaceport America's terminal and hangar facility will be built to the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system. Extensive use of sustainable and clean energy technology throughout the design will ensure that the spaceport will set the standard for environmentally sound design for similar structures in the future. From earth-tubes that will pre-condition the air to reduce HVAC costs by 50-70% to solar thermal panels on the roof for hot water to the embedded in-floor loop system, Spaceport America is both unique and iconic in terms of visual and environmental design.

The design for Spaceport America was created by a team of American and British architects that were selected after competing in an international design competition. URS Corporation, one of the world's largest design and engineering firms, teamed with lead designer Foster + Partners of the United Kingdom to submit the winning design. Foster + Partners has extensive experience designing airport buildings and other high-profile projects worldwide.

Spaceport America holds great promise for the people of New Mexico and their children. After voters in Sierra County and Doña Ana County approved an increase in local gross receipts taxes to fund the project, Governor Bill Richardson and the New Mexico State Legislature provided funding to develop and build Spaceport America. The economic impact includes growing the primary and secondary job markets to support the new commercial space industry. Perhaps most importantly, Spaceport America allows the creation of high-tech jobs and education programs for the students of New Mexico and the world.

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Post    Posted on: Sat Jun 20, 2009 5:18 pm
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