Space tourism company Virgin Galactic on Tuesday unveiled
the interior of its first SpaceShipTwo vehicle, VSS Unity.
Decorated in teals and blues designed to match the views,
the cabin includes 12 round windows across the sides and ceiling and seats that
recline to allow maximum space for passengers to float weightlessly during
The seats can be customized to fit each passenger, the
company said, and include digital seatback screens that give passengers a view
of flight data throughout the trip.
In addition to exterior and cockpit cameras, the spaceship
is outfitted with 16 interior cameras to record every aspect of the journey. It
also has a large mirror at the back.
Virgin Galactic design director Jeremy Brown said in a
virtual press conference that the mirror is one his favorite features, because
it will create a “real memory burn” for customers when “they see themselves
floating through space.”
The company did not say when it anticipates making its first
commercial flight with Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson. But the company’s
chief space office and former CEO George Whitesides said they hope to get final
clearance from the FAA after one or two more powered space flights from
Spaceport America in New Mexico.
After that, he said, the company anticipates “a small number”
of flights with four passengers aboard to test protocols and the customer
“Assuming that all goes well, we will be in the position to
fly Sir Richard into space,” Whitesides said.
To date, some 600 people have signed up for the 90-minute spaceflights.
The price is $250,000 per person.