The Spaceship Company Learns Valuable Lessons Using NASA 747-400 Simulator

The Spaceship Company (TSC) pilots flew the 747-400 simulator at NASA Ames Research Center on October 8-9, 2020, to further develop design loads on the mounting structure for launching vehicles from the top of a 747 aircraft. With nearly 100 runs completed, the TSC pilots flew various maneuvers and emergency events and recorded the aircraft response (such as rates, accelerations, aero parameters) to inform the load cases and establish a baseline. MFRA engineers and operators configured the simulator’s aerodynamic models to accurately represent three unique spaceship carriage configurations that TSC required.  TSC plans to return in a few weeks to repeat the tests with an enhanced model. Additional Covid-19 safety precautions were put in place during this simulation to ensure the health and safety of the TSC personnel and the NASA simulation operators.

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