A giant plane equipped with six engines and with the largest wingspan ever made, called Stratolaunch, made its first flight over the Mojave Desert, California, turning into reality a dream of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, who died a few months ago, in October 2018.
The chief executive of Stratolaunch Systems Jean Floyd said that the airplane made a "spectacular" landing, fully reaching the target. The Stratolaunch, founded by Allen himself, aims to compete on the market for aircraft designed for launching small satellites. "It was an exciting moment – added Floyd in a videoconference – to watch this majestic bird take flight, to see Allen's dream come to life before my eyes". "When I saw him – he continued – I whispered a" thank you "to Paul for making me part of this important success".
The colossal Stratolaunch, a double fuselage jet with 117 meters wingspan, took off from the aerospace station of the Mojave at 7 am yesterday (4 pm in Italy) and traveled 112 kilometers on the desert north of Los Angeles in two and a half hours, at a maximum speed of 304 kilometers per hour and at a maximum height of 5.181 meters.