The Masten Xaero ready for transport to the launch site (Photo: Masten Space Systems)
The Masten Xaero vertical takeoff/vertical landing rocket being prepared for launch (Photo: Masten Space Systems)
Preparing the Xaero for transport to the launch site (Photo: Masten Space Systems)
The Masten Xaero, looking like a science fiction rocket out of the 1950s, awaits launch in the Mohave desert (Photo: Masten Space Systems)
Masten engineers making field adjustments on the Xaero's guidance and control system (Photo: Masten Space Systems)
The Masten Xaero landing vertically on it's launch platform in the Mohave desert
In celebration of the two hundred and thirty sixth anniversary of the signing of the United States Declaration of Independence from British rule, Masten Space Systems has performed a record-setting flight of their vertical takeoff, vertical landing (VTVL) Xaero suborbital rocket at the Mohave Air and Space Port. Unlike the rockets designed specifically for the NASA Lunar Lander challenge, the Xaero is the only VTVL rocket intended to carry payloads into suborbital trajectories. The test flight saw the Xaero propelled to an altitude of 444 meters (1,457 feet), before returning to Earth and making a perfect landing on its jets. However, the test flight took place on July 3 - after all, who wants to work on the fourth?
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