This is the space tourism you can do with Virgin for $450,000

Virgin Galactic has released a new video showing their suborbital space tourism trip in more detail than ever before. The announcement, curiously, has been made public the same day that the company has announced the price of the tickets: a whopping $450,000.


As the video shows, passengers flying to the edge of space with Virgin Galactic will not start their journey aboard a rocket, but will be taken to an altitude of 50,000 feet by a shuttle plane while sitting inside the VSS Unity.


Virgin Galactic claims that its launch design is much smoother than a conventional rocket launch, like the one SpaceX does, bringing it closer this type of flight to the more mainstream public (not everyone can withstand the G-forces of a space launch).


The shuttle plane releases the Unity spacecraft once it reaches the required altitude, and seconds later, Unity fires its main engine to climb the remaining kilometers to the Kármán line, at 100 km from sea level and considered as the edge of outer space.

When the rocket engine shuts down, passengers can unfasten their seat belts and float around the cabin while taking in spectacular views of Earth, Virgin explains.

The video also describes howVirgin Galactic’s special technology called Pluma causes the space plane to transform from a winged vehicle to a capsulefor the start of its journey home, and then return to being a winged vehicle for the final stages of flight ending with landing.

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Virgin Galactic conducted a series of test flights last year culminating in its first crewed mission, involving Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson and five others, as you may well remember.

Eight years later, and after a large series of redesigns, Virgin Galactic intends to launch a commercial space tourism service before the end of this year. Some 600 people have already signed up after a first round of ticket sales.