Articles about spaceplane

Oz dad-and-son team rattle tin for homemade reusable spaceplane

Australian father and son team Robert and Jason Brand have taken to Kickstarter in search of funds for their ThunderStruck project, which they hope will eventually lead to a reusable spaceplane capable of carrying a 50kg payload into low Earth orbit. Robert and Jason Brand Before conquering space, the high-altitude …
Lester Haines, 27 May 2015

Oz father and son team plan suborbital spaceplane

An Australian father and son team is attempting to develop a radical low Earth orbit spaceplane ultimately intended as a "space courier service" to return payloads from aloft. High-altitude ballooning (HAB) vets Robert Brand and son Jason, 12, (pictured below after one of their balloon flights) are in the initial stages of " …
Lester Haines, 22 Jan 2015
The first X-37B following landing at Vandenberg AFB after the inaugural OTV-1 mission. Credit: USAF

America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft

The US Air Force has confirmed that its X-37B spacecraft designated Orbital Test Vehicle 3 has glided back to Earth and landed at 0924 PT (1724 UTC) at Vandenberg Air Force Base. "The landing of OTV-3 marks a hallmark event for the program," said the unnamed X-37B program manager in a statement. "The mission is our longest to …
Iain Thomson, 18 Oct 2014

Beers all round as Vulture 2 lands in Blighty

Pics The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team has just about recovered from a lively night last Friday at Vulture Central, which saw mission sponsors, Register hacks and a select group of our individual Kickstarter backers mix it up with the international press. The spaceplane landed in Blighty a couple of weeks back …
Lester Haines, 14 Oct 2014

LOHAN premieres spaceplane mission summary vid

Video summary of the entire LOHAN mission. In response to calls for a Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) summary video in support of our ongoing Kickstarter tin-rattling to launch the Vulture 2 spaceplane in New Mexico, we've put together a bare-bones overview of just how our audacious ballocket mission will work when …
Lester Haines, 8 Sep 2014

Vulture 2 strapped to speeding van before delicate brain surgery

On Sunday, Pixhawk autopilot brain surgeon Linus Penzlien touches down in Spain ahead of some serious Vulture 2 spaceplane wrangling. Working with APM:Plane lead developer Andrew Tridgell, Linus will be hewing custom Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission parameters from the living code. These include an "ascend …
Lester Haines, 7 Aug 2014
The canards bolted to the Vulture 2, with Playmonaut in his seat

Experts suspiciously eye LOHAN's cantankerous canards

As ever, we're grateful for our reader experts' feedback on the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission, and today we have a round-up of your comments on the Vulture 2 spaceplane's cantankerous canards. As we reported last month, the aircraft's forewings have finally been tamed, and here they are attached to the …
Lester Haines, 3 Jul 2014
Close-up of the canards connections, with Playmonaut a miniature fireman

LOHAN in FIGHT to DEATH with brace of cantankerous canards

Our plucky Playmonaut is back in his seat in the Vulture 2 spaceplane following the recent servo meltdown which had prompted his rapid exit from the vehicle. The miniature emergency required a servo swap-out, and while we were about it, we decided to upgrade the linkages to the canards, and bolt the cantankerous forewings to …
Lester Haines, 20 Jun 2014
The LOHAN team poses with the finished spaceplane

Spaceplane design nipper Ariadne gets a promotion

We're delighted to announce today that Ariadne - the young nipper responsible for the design of our Vulture 2 spaceplane's fetching vinyl wrap, has been promoted to "Sub-orbital aesthetics consulting engineer" for the Special Projects Bureau. To make it official, she now has her very own badge, courtesy of Chris Pyper down at …
Lester Haines, 13 Jun 2014
The Space Graphics Solutions team poses with the wrapped Vulture 2

LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane

Picture special Cue the traditional portentous drumroll and fanfare of trumpets as we reveal today the finished livery of our Vulture 2 spaceplane – a provocative combination of paint job and vinyl wrap which is, frankly, the mutt's nuts. Fans of our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) project will recall we asked readers back in …
Lester Haines, 19 Apr 2014

LOHAN preps Vulture 2 for hot vinyl wrap

The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team has some good news and some bad news today. The good news is that we've finished the paint element of of Vulture 2 spaceplane's livery, and it looks absolutely magnificent. The bad news, for you lot at least, is that we're not going to show our beloved readers just how …
Lester Haines, 28 Mar 2014

LOHAN's handsome young autopilot springs into life

It's been a couple of weeks since the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team took delivery of a brand-spanking new 3D Robotics Pixhawk autopilot for the Vulture 2 spaceplane, and we've now whipped out our original ArduPilot Mega (APM) 2.6 and hooked up the new kit for a quick test. Here's the Pixhawk up and running …
Lester Haines, 6 Feb 2014

LOHAN develops amazing mind-reading powers

There's been a lull in the flighting on the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) front over Xmas and New Year, but the team has emerged from the festivities revitalised and ready for action. In December, we announced that 3D Robotics had kindly agreed to supply the mission with an all-new Pixhawk autopilot, to replace …
Lester Haines, 17 Jan 2014
The painted nose of the Vulture 2, with its yellow upper and led underside

LOHAN sees bright red over Vulture 2 paintjob

It's been a week of tin-rattling and seeing red here at the Special Project Bureau's mountaintop headquarters as we finally knuckled down to slapping some paint on our Vulture 2. We threw the matter of our magnificant spaceplane's livery over to you, our beloved Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) fans, and you …
Lester Haines, 13 Nov 2013
A detail of the Vulture 2's nose structure

Vulture 2 spaceplane STRIPPED to the bone

The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team is preparing the Vulture 2 aircraft for its eye-catching paintjob, and while we rattle tins of primer and fiddle with wet-and-dry, we thought you might enjoy some intimate bare-bones views of our magnificent spaceplane. Here's the beast in its naked form (more photos here …
Lester Haines, 6 Nov 2013

Vulture 2 paintjob: Four-year-old nipper triumphs

It has been emotional, but we reckon we've finally got a Vulture 2 livery which satisfies all the requirements for a spaceplane paintjob. For those of you who've inexplicably missed all the excitement, we recently invited readers to suggest liveries for our beautiful vehicle, seen here in its raw state with Low Orbit Helium …
Lester Haines, 25 Oct 2013

Reg reader's nipper takes felt pens to Vulture 2

We're progressing nicely towards selecting a lively livery for our Vulture 2 spaceplane, although following publication earlier this week of the first batch of reader suggestions, Stelios Zacharias got in touch to insist "my four-year-old can design better than that". The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) fan wrote …
Lester Haines, 17 Oct 2013

Reg readers rise to Vulture 2 paintjob challenge

Fans of our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission have outdone themselves in offering suggestions as to just how we should paint our magnificent Vulture 2 spaceplane. Given that the world's first 3D-printed, rocket-powered vehicle is currently a bit lacking in the visibility department, as you can see from this …
Lester Haines, 14 Oct 2013

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