Virgin Galactic aborts mission after spacecraft malfunction

A Virgin Galactic spacecraft didn’t get very far during a test flight on Saturday — instead gliding safely back to its New Mexico launch site after its rocket motor failed to ignite in mid-air.

“The ignition sequence for the rocket motor did not complete. Vehicle and crew are in great shape,” the company tweeted at noon.

“We have several motors ready at Spaceport America. We will check the vehicle and be back to flight soon.”

The mishap happened moments after the spacecraft, with two pilots on board, was released from a special carrier jet at around 50,000 feet in the air.

CEO Michael Colglazier said that the motor was supposed to ignite at that point. Instead, an alert was triggered indicating that there was a lost connection.

The pilots made it back safely in Spaceport America.

The company said its investigating what caused the malfunction.

“As we do with every test flight, we are evaluating all the data, including the root cause assessment of the computer communication loss,” Virgin Galactic tweeted.

With Post wires

All countries
136,122,804
Total confirmed cases
Updated on April 11, 2021 10:15 am
Italy
3,754,077
Total confirmed cases
Updated on April 11, 2021 10:15 am
Spain
3,347,512
Total confirmed cases
Updated on April 11, 2021 10:15 am
Iran
2,070,141
Total confirmed cases
Updated on April 11, 2021 10:15 am
Germany
2,992,803
Total confirmed cases
Updated on April 11, 2021 10:15 am

Latest Updates

Without Backpackers to Pick Them, Crops Rot by the Ton in Australia

SHEPPARTON, Australia — Peter Hall ran a hand over the Gala apples sitting in a wooden crate on his orchard in southeastern Australia, lamenting...

U.S. Will Have Enough COVID-19 Vaccines for All Adults by End of May, Biden Says

You have reached your limit of 4 free articles. Get unlimited access to TIME.com.99¢ for the first month Subscribe Now You have...

Biden Vows Enough Vaccine ‘for Every Adult American’ by End of May

But Johnson & Johnson and its partners fell behind in their manufacturing. The company was supposed to deliver its first 37 million doses by...

Popular Articles

Without Backpackers to Pick Them, Crops Rot by the Ton in Australia

SHEPPARTON, Australia — Peter Hall ran a hand over the Gala apples sitting in a wooden crate on his orchard in southeastern Australia, lamenting...

U.S. Will Have Enough COVID-19 Vaccines for All Adults by End of May, Biden Says

You have reached your limit of 4 free articles. Get unlimited access to TIME.com.99¢ for the first month Subscribe Now You have...

Biden Vows Enough Vaccine ‘for Every Adult American’ by End of May

But Johnson & Johnson and its partners fell behind in their manufacturing. The company was supposed to deliver its first 37 million doses by...

Twitch gamer Sodapoppin quits fake GTA jobs because they’re too hard

Sometimes being a fake fast-food restaurant manager can be as taxing as being a real one. This is especially true when you also have pretend...

Sarkozy says could take corruption appeal to European human rights court

France's former president Nicolas Sarkozy said Tuesday that he might consider taking his appeal against a corruption conviction to the European Court of...

Where Biden’s Foreign Policy Is Taking the U.S.

One day before the administration announced its decision on Saudi Arabia, Biden gave the first major indication of his presidency that he would be...

Interviews