Burt Rutan founded Scaled Composites, LLC (www.scaled.com), Mojave, CA, in 1982 to build cool flying machines, including an all-composite design called “Starship”. Scaled is the corporate builder of SpaceShipOne, which captured the Ansari X-Prize on October 4, 2004. It is teamed with the Virgin Group to build SpaceShipTwo (SS2) for suborbital spaceline operators, including Virgin Galactic (www.virgingalactic.com).
(Above, a Starship flies chase for the White Knight carrier aircraft with SpaceShipOne slung underneath. That’s a wind farm near Palm Springs on the ground. Photo courtesy Scaled Composites.)