Virgin Galactic SpaceShip III

Before VSS Unity's next test flight in May, Virgin Galactic has unveiled the first SpaceShip III, the VSS Imagine. The shiny new vessel gets its unique finish from a mirrored material that reflects its surroundings as it leaves the planet and enters space. Aside from its aesthetic appeal, the covering also provides the vehicle with thermal protection. A modular design helps to maximize performance for improved maintenance and increased flight rate, with a company goal of flying 400 flights per year, per spaceport. The VSS Imagine is currently conducting ground testing and has plans to move to glide flights this summer.

Photos: Virgin Galactic

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