Vulcan Aerospace Stratolaunch: Microsoft co-founder, Paul Allen, has unveiled a colossal jet aircraft that will operate as a low-flying satellite launch platform.
The Vulcan Aerospace Stratolaunch carrier made its debut on Wednesday at a giant shed in the Mojave airport in California, where it has been under construction for the last four years.
The aircraft consists of two twin Boeing 747-400 aircraft and has six 747 engines. Stratolaunch will undergo aircraft, ground and flight feeder tests.
Vulcan Aerospace Stratolaunch aims to carry missiles and satellites to 30.000 feet around. From this height will be released the rocket that will carry the satellite and put it in a low orbit. The aircraft will return to its base, refuel and carry more rockets.
Galactic's Virgin Orbit plans a similar satellite launch service from a 747-400, called Cosmic Girl, which will carry Virgin's LauncherOne rocket.
Let's look at some of his technical features:
Its wings are 385 feet or 117 meters, making the new aircraft slightly larger than the length of an NFL stadium and making it the world's largest aircraft, surpassing Howard Hughes's Hruf Husen Hercules.
The aircraft has a length of 238 feet (73 meters) from the cockpit to the tail, with a height of 50 feet (15 meters). Exit sheds were made for the first time to check the company if the 28 wheels of the aircraft can support its weight.
It can take off with total weight 1.300.000 pounds (589670.081 pounds) and bring maximum payload up to 550.000 pounds or 249476 pounds. It has a 1.000 nautical mile radius.
Recall that Allen founded Microsoft together with Bill Gates 1975 and remains a strategic consultant of the company, although he resigned from 2000. It has a fortune that reaches 18,6 billion dollars.