Earlier today, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galatic unveiled the amazing SpaceShipTwo space tourism vehicle. SpaceShipTwo will carry six tourists at a time to 65 miles above the surface of the earth, beyond the Apogee of where our atmosphere ends and space begins. Passengers will experience the full weightlessness of space and unparalleled views of the Earth before returning safely to land. While SpaceShipTwo has not yet been live tested, its completion and introduction to the press is a significant step toward public space travel.
SpaceShipTwo will be carried by a mother ship, the WhiteNightTwo, to a suborbital altitude of 9.5 miles before it undocks and launches its own thrusters into pure black space. Not long after, it’s final altitude will be reached and its passengers will join the lucky few to have ever entered the expansive reaches of space. The ticket price for travel into this final frontier is suggested to run at $200,000 each for a trip that lasts roughly two-and-a-half hours. While it’ll be a few years until SpaceShipTwo’s maiden voyage, that’ll at least give us some time to start saving our pennies to boldly go where few have gone before. [via discovery]