Up, Up, and Away

By Deane Barker on June 21, 2004

Private spacecraft makes historic launch: SpaceShipOne is in the air as I write this, trying to become the first private, manned vehicle in space. I wish them every success toward this goal.

Thousands gathered in the Mojave Desert to watch the launch of SpaceShipOne, the first private manned space flight. […]

Michael Melvill, 62, a veteran test pilot, becomes the first civilian flier to earn his astronaut’s wings aboard a privately financed spacecraft.

The rocket plane designed by Burt Rutan and built by his firm Scaled Composites is taking its 15th test flight — its farthest and fastest to date.

For some background on this endevour, see this post and this post.