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Mojave’s Colossal Aircraft Discovery: Unveiling Innovative Engines and Cutting-Edge Test Cargo

Stratolaunch Gears Up for Alleged In-Flight Release Test of Talon Hypersonic Testbed On Thursday, October 13, 2022, a tip from one of the most renowned spotters in the U.S. led TheAviationist to Mojave Air & Space Port, where they found “Roc,” the world’s largest aircraft, the unique Stratolaunch, outside its enormous hangar. The following day, the aircraft’s engines were observed operating, and the massive, dual-fuselage, six-engine plane had been relocated far from its hangar.

“Roc”, the colossal Stratolaunch carrier aircraft at Mojave Air & Space Port.

According to further, reliable sources close to the Stratolaunch project, the plane is being readied for an upcoming test flight rumored to involve the separation drop-test of an unmanned Talon-A hypersonic mock-up, referred to as “Talon-0” for this alleged forthcoming test.

Stratolaunch was seen carrying what is believed to be a drop-test mock-up of the Talon-A reusable, hypersonic launch vehicle.

An individual close to the project informed TheAviationist that the plane might be flight-ready in “Two to three weeks.”

Stratolaunch was pushed back with engines running on Friday, Oct. 14, 2022.

The sighting of Stratolaunch triggered a series of unverified rumors that the aircraft might perform a fly-over at the 2022 Aerospace Valley Open House, Air Show, and STEM Expo at Edwards Air Force Base, just south of Stratolaunch’s location. The show is set for Saturday and Sunday, October 15 & 16. One schedule distributed to the media at the show supposedly includes the Talon-A hypersonic unmanned test vehicle. No official reference to Stratolaunch was made by airshow organizers.

Ground crew members were observed inspecting engines on Stratolaunch on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022.

When asked if the aircraft would appear at Edwards AFB, the source close to Stratolaunch responded, “We can’t. We don’t have the appropriate flight certification for a demonstration.”

The alleged upcoming flight of Stratolaunch in “Two to three weeks” was described to TheAviationist as a test of how the reusable Talon-A unmanned hypersonic will separate from the Stratolaunch launch aircraft. The source informed us that “The Talon-0 is an accurate representation of the weight, C.G. [center of gravity], and aerodynamic characteristics of the Talon-1. It even has a system for pumping fluid to simulate fuel flow.”

According to our source, when Stratolaunch takes to the skies again, it will be the aircraft’s eighth flight. The huge dual-fuselage launch platform aircraft has a wingspan of 117 meters or 385 feet. It is powered by six Pratt & Whitney PW4000 jet engines repurposed from two Boeing 747s. The plane’s landing gear is also taken from 747 aircraft. The aircraft is constructed almost entirely of advanced composites, including carbon fiber.

Stratolaunch can carry and deploy up to three orbital vehicles for drop-launching into orbit. This launch concept competes with other commercial space payload launch ideas like SpaceX, which previously collaborated with Stratolaunch until 2012.

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