Minor Part Loss in ‘Galactic 06’ Spaceflight – Virgin Galactic
On Monday, Virgin Galactic, the aerospace and space travel business, revealed that a tiny alignment pin had come loose from its Galactic 06 voyage.
During flight, the alignment pin broke free from the launch pylon of the company’s mothership, VMS Eve.
According to regulations, the problem was discovered during post-flight evaluations and notified to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Wednesday by Richard Branson’s space enterprise.
The FAA and the company are working together to undertake an evaluation.
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According to the corporation, there were two crew members and four private astronauts on the journey.
“Galactic 06 was a safe and successful flight that was conducted in accordance with Virgin Galactic’s rigorous flight procedures and protocols,” the company said in a statement.
“At no time did the detached alignment pin pose a safety impact to the vehicles or the crew on board. Virgin Galactic flights occur in restricted airspace and at specific geographical launch locations that control the hazards to people or structures on the ground.”
According to the corporation, neither the mothership nor the spaceship suffered any damage.
According to Virgin Galactic, the pin aids in ensuring that, during pre-flight operations, the spaceship and mothership are lined up for mating.
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The alignment pin assists in transferring drag and other forces from the spacecraft to the shear pin fitting assembly and into the mothership’s center wing and pylon during matched flight as the vehicles ascend towards release altitude.
On the mothership, the shear pin fitting assembly was still affixed and undamaged.
“While both parts play a role during mated flight, they do not support the spaceship’s weight, nor do they have an active function once the spaceship is released,” the company said.
“The alignment pin and shear pin fitting assembly performed as designed during the mated portion of the flight, and only the alignment pin detached after the spaceship was released from the mothership.”
After the study is over, Virgin Galactic said it will confirm the flight window for the “Galactic 07” trip, which is scheduled for the second quarter of 2024.
After going into commercial service in 2023, Virgin Galactic launched the flight on January 26th, 2024, marking the company’s first space tourism mission.
Last year, Virgin Galactic launched its first flight with its own crew of astronauts. Galactic 02, the second commercial spaceflight mission, was launched into suborbital space on the reusable spacecraft VSS Unity from Spaceport America in New Mexico.
Along with the first Olympian and female astronauts from the Caribbean, the “historic mission” also carried the youngest astronaut and the first mother-daughter team to space.
In 2004, British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson created Virgin Galactic.