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Off on holiday to a little place that is truly out of this world

THE first female space tourist blasted off on a Russian rocket yesterday on a ten-day round trip to the International Space Station.

Out-of-this-world experience is not just a sci-fi dream

AS THE rocket motor cut and the little spacecraft coasted on towards an altitude of 69.6 miles above the Earth, Brian Binnie experienced what he calls "the holy trinity of spaceflight".

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Space tourists set for Lossiemouth launch

COMMERCIAL space flights could be launched from Scotland by the end of the decade, the head of Richard Branson's space tourism company said yesterday.

To boldly go..

AS A business card, it takes some beating: "Will Whitehorn, President, Virgin Galactic." A few years ago, one might have been excused for presuming that Edinburgh-born Whitehorn was on his way to a Trekkies' convention, but this week Virgin Galactic, the space tourism company established by Richard Branson, fanfared its very real plans for commercial space flights within two years.

SpaceShipOne rockets to £5.6m prize

IN THE annals of aviation, it will undoubtedly rank alongside such momentous events as the Wright brothers’ first powered flight in 1903 and Charles Lindbergh’s transatlantic crossing in 1927.

Private space ship spins wildly before making safe ascent

A CRAFT that promises one day to take tourists beyond the Earth’s atmosphere made a nail-biting ascent into space yesterday.

Designer of spaceship set to land in city

THE American designer of a spaceship in which astronauts will attempt to win a coveted £10 million prize was today set to be in Edinburgh to discuss the imminent private manned space flight.

Deja-vu all over again - The final frontier

With SpaceShipOne completing the first successful civilian flight into space last month, travel to the stars is firmly back in vogue. It looks like dedicated travellers could soon be taking luxury cruises around the galaxy instead of the Caribbean.

Pioneer takes off as a pilot, lands as astronaut

• SpaceShipOne becomes the first non-governmental, independently-financed craft to take a man into space

Private mission set to reach final frontier of space exploration

THE first manned commercial mission to space was due to blast off today in a bold bid to make aviation history.

Historic blast-off for first private spaceship

A SMALL rocket plane will power into a steep climb over California’s Mojave desert later this month and, all going well, fly into history as the first private manned space vehicle.

All systems go in race to reach final frontier

A 25ft-long rocket plane last week took commercial space travel 40 miles closer to reality, when the current front-runner in the $10 million X-prize competition soared far above California’s Mojave desert in its third and highest flight to date.

Firm makes highest-ever manned private flight

A PRIVATELY developed manned rocket has soared to 211,400ft over California, in the third and highest flight of its reusable launch vehicle.

Rocket-plane shoots into space

THE world’s first private, manned rocket-plane has made a successful maiden flight, breaking the sound barrier and marking an important new milestone in the history of space travel.

Global party marks 100 years of flight

AVIATION enthusiasts across Scotland joined global celebrations yesterday to mark the centennial of the first powered flight by the Wright brothers.

Who'll be first with star ship Private Enterprise?

We’ve put people on the moon and hundreds more into orbit. Yet more than 40 years after Yuri Gagarin’s momentous first circuit of the globe, space travel remains the prerogative of government agencies - Russian, American and, shortly, Chinese - which no longer rate manned space missions high on their priorities. Contrary to the interplanetary pioneering spirit and back-room boffinry which informed much early science fiction, private enterprise, so far, has failed to put a man into space.

A space race for tourists

A HUNDRED years ago Wilbur and Orville Wright astonished the world when their aeroplane, the Kittyhawk, made its maiden flight in North Carolina. Now a new generation of billionaire entrepreneurs is set for a fresh assault on the final frontier of human travel: space.

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