SpaceShipOne - The First Strato-Yacht?
Pilot Brian Binnie successfully took the privately owned spacecraft SpaceShipOne high enough to win the X Prize. Binnie has 21 years of flight test experience, and has logged more than 4,600 hours of flight time in 59 different aircraft.
(From SpaceShipOne Cockpit)
Although science fiction is replete with examples of space ships and galactic empires, it was more difficult to think of an example of an sf space ship from that early, developmental phase of space travel. However, as soon as I saw an interior shot of the ship, I remembered that in Robert Heinlein's 1958 novel Methuselah's Children, he refers to a small, privately owned suborbital craft called a Joy-boat Junior:
"Why, the ship wasn't a proper deep-space craft at all. It did not have an airlock but merely a seal to let it fasten to a larger ship; Lazarus was staring right into the body of the craft. It looked like - yes, it was a "Joy-boat Junior," a little private strato-yacht, suitable only for point-to-point trajectory, or at the most for rendezvous with a satellite provided the satellite could refuel it for the return leg."
In the novel, wealthy individuals owned small spacecraft like this in the same way that the wealthy own Lear jets today.
See the account of the X Prize-winning flight of SpaceShipOne The X Prize is Won for details on the winning flight.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/6/2004)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )
Related News Stories -
Used Dragon Cargo Spacecraft Will Fly Again
'the overstrained meters made the smaller craft skittish as a young horse...' - Robert Heinlein
Laser-Powered Spacecraft To Explore The Solar System
'Whoever launched it fired a laser cannon... for about forty-five years, so the intruder would have a beam to travel on...'- Niven/Pournelle, 1974.
SKYLON Space Plane Gets Boost
'They were more airplane than spaceship...'- Robert Heinlein, 1951.
Europe's Cheops To Look For Habitable Planets
'I was near enough it now to set my automatic astronomical instruments to searching it for a habitable planet.'- Edmond Hamilton, 1936.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
RFID Chipped Employees Of Three Square Market
'About a third of the people in Manhattan have replaced their Freedom Card with a radio-frequency chip...'
JAXA's Int-Ball Drone To Follow Astronauts In Space Station
'I want you to build me some of those.'
Amazon Patents Annoying Robot That Follows You
'The... machine, being homotropic, headed toward them, still bleating...'
Hand Gestures And Body Poses Control Devices
'He waved his hand... the circuit switched...'
Rovable Robots Crawl Across Your Body
'Most of the crew have the tiny imp ride on their shoulder...'
Sansar Social Virtual Reality Platform In 2017?
'And just as a daydreamer forgets his actual surroundings, and sees other realities...'
Cellphone Harvests Power From Ambient Radio Signals And Light
A battery-free phone.
Desktopography Makes Virtual Desktops Real
'Ender doodled on his desk, drawing contour maps of mountainous islands and then telling his desk to display them in three dimensions...'
LaWS Laser Can Take Out Rogue Drones
Looks like a weapon for the Runaway squad!
Moon Express Lunar Robot Mining: Shine On, Harvest Moon
'The bulldozer moved through the lunar strip mine... '
Liquid Body Armor For TALOS Exoskeleton
'... instantly became rigid all over when something struck it...'
Hyperloop One Video Shows It Works!
'Complete evacuation of the interior of the tubes [and] a wave that provides the new propulsive energy for the cars...'
Chairless Chair Exoskeleton By Sapetti
'Earth's scientists... devised rigid metallic clothing...'
Publishing Technologies In Science Fiction
Well, this should be enough references to start...
Russia Working On Military Exoskeletons
'Вы похожи на большую стальную гориллу...'
3D Printed Bionic Chinese Skin
Your skin is ready!
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories