Virgin Galactic has finally revealed the design of the world’s first space plane for tourists. So, hop on to its tailor-made seats, and get ready to fly 97 kilometres above the Earth’s atmosphere. By Tanvi Jain

 

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Spaceflight company Virgin Galactic has finally unveiled the design of the world’s first commercial spacecraft called VSS Unity. Virgin Group Founder Richard Branson aims to send space tourists on a 90-minute trip outside the Earth’s atmosphere.  

“Our spaceship is designed to carry astronauts but can also take payloads, or a combination of the two. This capability provides the scientific community access to high-quality microgravity, as well as to generally inaccessible regions of the upper atmosphere,” Virgin Galactic tweeted. 

 

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With a capacity of six passengers and two crew members, the reclining seats inside the cabin have been designed to suit one’s own weight and height. Moreover, its large circular porthole windows have been made to give passengers a spectacular view of the planet from the space — 97 kilometres above the Earth. 

“Each individually designed seat has been engineered to match the dynamism of the flight. A pilot-controlled recline mechanism optimally positions astronauts to manage G-forces on boost and re-entry and frees up cabin space to maximise an unrestricted float zone when in zero-G,” it added. 

 

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“Twelve large windows contain ‘Halo’ surrounds with soft extended edges, allowing astronauts to perfectly position themselves for awe-inspiring views, from the infinity of outer space to the beauty of our home planet. Mood-lighting is used to subtly reflect back and elevate the human responses to each stage of flight. At the pinnacle, as the Earth comes into view against the black sky of space, all lighting is extinguished, bringing an instant focus to the profoundly beautiful vista,” it further said. 

The spacecraft though doesn’t allow smartphones onboard but is well equipped with 16 still and two video cameras. You can even look at yourself in space with the help of a black mirror.  

Virgin Galactic Chief Space Officer George Whitesides told Reuters that “600 customers have already signed up to fly, and over 400 more have expressed interest.” 

You can too if you have USD 2,50,000 (approximately INR 1.8 crore) to shell out on one ticket. 

Related: You May Soon Be Able To Travel To The Edge Of Space. Here’s How!