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Virgin Galactic

Second flight wins $10m prize

4 Oct, 2004

virgin-galactic-spaceship-1-secondSpaceShipOne makes its second flight into space five days after the first. This time it reaches altitude of 112 km (367,442 feet) compared with 102.9 km on the first voyage. Achieving two space flights within a week, it wins the $10m Ansari X prize for privately built spaceships offered by the X Prize Foundation of St. Louis, Missouri. The prize also requires it to achieve altitudes above 100 km (62 miles) on both flights. Pilot Brian Binnie ignites the hybrid rocket motor a few seconds after SpaceShipOne is released from the White Knight carrier plane somewhere above 46,000 feet, and after the top altitude is confirmed by radar, it glides back to earth and lands like a regular airplane, touching down at 11:14 a.m. Eastern.