Feeds

Virgin Galactic inks passenger training deal

Rocket fat cat's plan unaffected by Mojave explosion

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Virgin Galactic, the firm offering suborbital rocketplane thrill rides for the very wealthy, has signed up a partner company to conduct preflight training for its customers.

The first hundred sign-ups with the Branson biz empire's nascent space operation - each of whom has paid $200k to be a "Virgin Galactic Founder" - will be trained by Nastar (National Aerospace Training and Research). Training will be carried out between September and November in Pennsylvania, and Nastar will also train subsequent Virgin Galactic customers.

Steady on driver, I've spilt my caviar.

The Nastar Center was set up specifically with the idea of providing training for customers of the budding millionaires-in-space industry.

“Virgin Galactic chose the Nastar Center after a comprehensive review of other facilities across the US and Europe," said Will Whitehorn, Virgin Galactic president, in a Nastar release.

"Nastar Center won the day, not only because of their state-of-the-art facilities and professional experience, but also because they believe in great customer service ... we believe our founders will be in excellent hands," he added, suggesting that the package may include a certain plushness not so far seen in astronaut training.

Nastar say their training options include launch simulations with sustained G forces. The Virgin Galactic Founders will get “hands-on” training in a high-performance centrifuge. According to Nastar, "the experience culminates in a high-fidelity simulation of the actual launch into space, including the real Gz and Gx forces. Gz is the G force experienced up and down the spine, and Gx is the force felt through the chest."

After a recent explosion at the Mojave Spaceport where the Virgin Galactic "SpaceShip Two" suborbital pleasure-ships are being built, there was speculation that the first flights could be delayed. However, the timing of the training as announced by Nastar would seem to suggest that isn't the case - unless this is a bid by Virgin to placate wealthy patrons upset by postponements.®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency
Experiment aboard ISS shows we should all chill out for cleaner engines
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.