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EAA AirVenture Today is published by the Experimental Aircraft Association for EAA AirVenture from July 27 - August 3. It is distributed free on the convention grounds as well as other locations in Oshkosh and surrounding communities. Stories and photos are copyrighted 2008 by EAA AirVenture Today and EAA. Reproduction by any means is prohibited without written consent.

  

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The official daily newspaper of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh


Volume 9, Number 3 July 29, 2008     

White Knight Two Eve rolled out in Mojave
By Jack Hodgson

The Virgin Galactic model in the EAA Welcome Center.
Photo by Phil Weston

Burt Rutan, of Scaled Composites, and Sir Richard Branson, of Virgin Galactic, unveiled the long-awaited White Knight Two aircraft in Mojave, California, on Monday morning.

In a dramatic morning ceremony, this successor to the legendary White Knight One aircraft was rolled out of its hangar in front of a gathering of media and industry representatives. Assembled media at Oshkosh took part in a video conference held at the EAA Vette Theater and had the opportunity to ask questions of Virgin Galactic President Will Whitehorn and Scaled Composites’ Bob Morgan.

White Knight Two, which is the product of a long list of technical firsts, is designed to be the launch vehicle for Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo, which is destined to be the first craft to carry paying passengers on suborbital flights.

In addition to its suborbital launch mission, Whitehorn said that White Knight Two would be capable of launching small payloads, and possibly even a single-passenger vehicle, into low earth orbit.

They also envision other, non-space-related missions such as carrying large, heavy cargo and even water-bombing for firefighting.

At the Mojave rollout, Branson’s mother, Eve Branson, christened the first White Knight Two aircraft with the name Eve.

In keeping with Scaled’s long-standing policy of not announcing development schedules, it declined to say when the aircraft’s first flight would be, or any other development dates.

But AirVenture attendees can find out the latest on the project right here in Oshkosh. A model of Space Ship Two is on display throughout the week at the EAA Welcome Center. On Tuesday, its inventor, Burt Rutan, will fly to Oshkosh with Branson and Whitehorn for two special AirVenture events on Tuesday: 1 p.m. at Honda Pavilion 7 as well as during Tuesday’s evening program at Theater in the Woods.

FUTURE AIRVENTURE DATES: 2014: July 28-Aug. 3; 2015: July 20-26; 2016: July 25-31; 2017: July 24-30
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