Feeds

Virgin rocket-ship terminal revealed

Pictures of the coach station to the stars

SANS - Survey on application security programs

The Branson biz empire's suborbital-tourism-for-the-wealthy operation, Virgin Galactic, yesterday unveiled the architectural designs for its rocket-ship terminal at Spaceport America, the nascent commercial space base in New Mexico.

A cutaway view of the futuristic cowpat-styled terminal.

The designs chosen were put together by a team composed of American engineers from URS Corp and noted Brit architect Lord Norman Foster's operation, Foster + Partners. Foster has been resposible for lots of high-profile buildings and structures, including the London "Gherkin" and the Millennium footbridge across the Thames - which famously had to be closed soon after opening because people walking on it caused it to wobble dangerously. (Foster resisted the idea that the problems were in any way his fault, blaming engineers Arup.)

Regarding the new Spaceport America terminal, Lord Foster said: "We are absolutely thrilled to be part of the dynamic team chosen to design the world’s first space terminal. This technically complex building will not only provide a dramatic experience for the astronauts and visitors, but will set an ecologically sound model for future Spaceport facilities."

God knows why we're all here, the whole fleet only has thirty seats.

The low-lying, brown, blobby-looking complex will include Virgin Galactic training facilities and the hangar for the space-line's fleet of five SpaceshipTwo rocketplanes - tickets from $200k - as well as a pair of White Knight Two carrier planes, which will carry the rockets up to launch altitude. Visitors will be able to view the hangar from an overhead walkway, and observe the runway from the front of the building.

Beardy biz kingpin Branson expressed his excitement, saying that, "the vision for the world’s first purpose-built private spaceport is truly out of this world ... Next year will see the first test flights of SpaceShipTwo and it is fantastic that we will now have a permanent home to go to, which will be every bit as inspiring for the astronauts of the future as Burt Rutan’s groundbreaking [spaceship] technology.”

The new complex is expected to cost $31m, paid by the New Mexico Spaceport Authority (NMSA), an arm of the state government. It will be the headquarters of NMSA, as well as that of Virgin Galactic. The Branson fat-cats-in-space operation will reportedly lease about 80 percent of the space.

More pictures (in very hi res) are available from NMSA here

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Red-faced LOHAN team 'fesses up in blown SPEARS fuse fiasco
Standing in the corner, big pointy 'D' hats
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
New FEMTO-MOON sighted BIRTHING from Saturn's RING
Icy 'Peggy' looks to be leaving the outer rings
Melting permafrost switches to nasty, high-gear methane release
Result? 'Way more carbon being released into the atmosphere as methane'
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.