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Stratolaunch signs research contract with Air Force Research Laboratory

MOJAVE, Calif. — Stratolaunch, based at the Mojave Air and Space Port in Southern California’s High Desert has been awarded a research contract by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory.

Stratolaunch, under partnership with Booz Allen Hamilton, is on contract with AFRL to examine and assess the feasibility of hypersonic flight tests of a wide range of Air Force experiments and payloads on a frequent and routine basis.

Stratolaunch supports national security objectives for hypersonic offensive and defensive weapons development through the design, manufacture, and operation of a fleet of reusable hypersonic aerospace vehicles air-launched from its globally deployable carrier aircraft, Roc. The company plans to augment existing Department of Defense flight test resources through affordable, commercially contracted, rapid-turnaround hypersonic flight testing for the Department of Defense and its prime contractor partners.

“Our goal is to provide affordable and routine access to the hypersonic flight environment,” said Dr. Daniel Millman, chief technology officer for Stratolaunch. “We look forward to sharing lessons learned from this collaboration with AFRL, yielding powerful and practical research results benefiting the nation.”

On Jan. 16, the company completed a successful third test flight of its Roc carrier aircraft. The aircraft flew for four hours, 23 minutes and is the world’s largest aircraft with a wingspan of 385 feet.

The Roc carrier aircraft will be used to carry and air-launch reusable hypersonic vehicles, called Talon, later this year.

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