Friday, October 01, 2004

One down, one to go.

According to the Ansari X-prize site, Wednesdays flight reached (indeed exceeded) the target altitude and thus meets the requirements for a Prize flight. The next flight is now scheduled for Monday, Oct 4th. (Given Burt's penchant for interesting dates, I was betting on Oct 11th, the date Columbus landed in the New World. On the other hand, that left him vulnerable to a problem and the window closing without a second sucessful flight.)

[Update 15:33]
Andrew points out to me that the 4th is the anniversary of Sputnik 1. Mea Culpa.

(A rumor from a usually reliable source has reached my ears that Paul Allen and Burt Rutan may ride the next flight as passengers.)

Rand Simberg has an interesting discussion on the roll control problems experienced on the two high altitude flights to date. Not mentioned there is a theory Craig Fink posted on the internet, that since the rudders are asymmetrical, they may contribute to the onset of the roll. Burt Rutan has stated that the roll problems are a known problem and that the design of SpaceShip Two will correct the problem.


At 2:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

'course, October 4th is a reasonably notable anniversary anyway, in space terms...


At 3:32 PM, Blogger Derek said...

Ack! Maxmia Me Culpa.

So what was the 29th the anniversary of? Or am I confused again?

At 6:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think I managed to find an anniversary for the 29th, which surprised me a bit; it's always interesting to do a little Rutanology ;-)

Hmm... it was Bill Nelson's birthday? Anniversary of the '88 Return-To-Flight, or launch of Salyut 6? Neither strikes me as worth noting.

In non-spaceness... um... it's Michaelmas? I honestly can't see an interesting date behind this one, and I'd be interested to learn what it was if Rutan intended it...

(If the 4th isn't doable, the 12th is a nice anniversary, though...)



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