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Science • Space
Virgin Orbit’s fails on first orbital test flight
Cosmic Girl releases LauncherOne mid-air for the first time during a July 2019 drop test
Cosmic Girl releases LauncherOne mid-air for the first time during a July 2019 drop test Credit: Virgin Orbit

Virgin Orbit has failed in its test launch of a LauncherOne rocket carried by a Boeing 747. The launch was the first attempt to an end-to-end system test, but the test ended shortly after LauncherOne was released from the 'Cosmic Girl' Boeing 747.

“Our team performed their prelaunch and flight operations with incredible skill today. Test flights are instrumented to yield data and we now have a treasure trove of that. We accomplished many of the goals we set for ourselves, though not as many as we would have liked,” said Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart. “Nevertheless, we took a big step forward today. Our engineers are already poring through the data. Our next rocket is waiting. We will learn, adjust, and begin preparing for our next test, which is coming up soon.”