SpaceShipOne Takes X-Prize Spoils

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zavvy

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<b>SpaceShipOne Takes X-Prize Spoils</b><br /><br />LINK<br /><br />The team behind SpaceShipOne has been handed the $10m cheque and trophy it won for claiming the Ansari X-Prize. <br /><br />The spoils were accepted at a ceremony in St Louis, US, by the aviation pioneer Burt Rutan, whose company designed and built the rocket vehicle. <br /><br />SpaceShipOne broke through the Earth's atmosphere twice in five days to win the prize which was set up to galvanise the private spaceflight business. <br /><br />The UK businessman Sir Richard Branson expects to offer space rides in 2007. <br /><br />His Virgin company will use a development of the SpaceShipOne craft to carry five fare-paying passengers to more than 100km. <br /><br />Sir Richard, who will call his spaceline Virgin Galactic, says 7,000 people have already shown interest in buying a ticket, which will cost about US$200,000 (more than £100,000). <br /><br />An annual X-Prize Cup will now take place in New Mexico, where private groups will be invited to demonstrate their space technology. <br /><br />The X-Prize Foundation is also working with the World Technology Network to create a whole set of new awards. The so-called WTN X-Prizes will seek scientific or technological breakthroughs that tackle the most important challenges facing humans today. <br /><br />
 
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