New Mexico wins UK spaceplane study contract

by | Mar 25, 2010 | Seradata News | 0 comments

If links between New Mexico and UK plans for reusable spaceplanes were not evident enough with Spaceport America and Virgin Galactic’s presence there then a new research contract has only made those trans-Atlantic connections more concrete

UK single stage to orbit Skylon spaceplane developer Reaction Engines has announced on its website that it has placed a study contract with the Physical Science Laboratory at the New Mexico State University (NMSU)

Reaction Engines says: “NMSU will be undertaking a preliminary evaluation of the requirements that Skylon D1 will need to meet for safe autonomous flight”

Skylon D1 is an enhanced version with a greater payload capability. The UK company states that the university was selected because of its heritage with unmanned flight vehicles – Skylon is not piloted but may have a passenger module for its payload bay

NMSU’s knowledge of the US National Airspace System and “expertise” about the worldwide airspace systems were also factors in its selection

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