Virgin Galactic Commerial Space Mission with Italian Air Force Delayed to Mid-Oct—Here’s Why
(Photo : by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images) Sir Richard Branson holds up photos that he brought with him into space, as he speaks after flying into space aboard a Virgin Galactic vessel, a voyage he described as the "experience of a lifetime" -- and one he hopes will usher in an era of lucrative space tourism at Spaceport America, near Truth and Consequences, New Mexico on July 11, 2021.

Virgin Galactic's first commercial space mission with the Italian Air Force has been delayed to mid-October from the initial late-September schedule. 

It is not the first hiccup that Virgin Galactic is facing for its first commercial space flight. 

Virgin Galactic Space Mission 

As per Engadget last Sept. 2, the Federal Aviation Administration or FAA slapped the exploration company of Richard Branson with a suspension, barring the firm from flying and launching any space mission. 

It comes as the FAA investigates the previous space flight of Richard Branson as the aircraft of the billionaire, called Unity 22, went off-course last July 11.

The agency alleged that the Virgin vehicle went beyond the clearance zone as it returned to Earth. 

However, the space firm noted that it did not fly beyond the "lateral confines." 

Related Article: Blue Origin vs. Virgin Galactic: Differences of New Shepard and Unity-22 Spacecrafts from Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson 

Virgin Galactic Space Mission Delayed 

And now, according to Business Insider, Virgin Galactic is facing another separate problem, involving its first commercial research mission with the Italian Air Force.

It is to note that the FAA investigation about Brandson's flight has nothing to do with the latest delay that Virgin is facing.  

The delay of the space mission was announced by the founder of Virgin Galactic, billionaire Brandson, himself.    

The space mission that Virgin is set to fly will be carrying three crew members from the National Research Council and the Italian Air Force--all of the passengers paid the space exploration company. 

Both the Italian Air Force and the National Research Council will be flying to space to study and research the technologies and systems of spaceflight today and in the long term. 

To be precise, the space mission will also look into the varying effects of changing from Earth's gravity to the microgravity of outer space to the environment as well as humans. 

Virgin Galactic Commercial Flight Delayed: Here's Why 

The founder of the Virgin group revealed that the first commercial space mission of Virgin would be delayed to mid-October due to a manufacturing problem that the spacecraft is facing. 

The production issue was raised by one of the suppliers of Galactic, warning that there is a possible defect in the flight control actuation system of the Virgin spacecraft.

However, the said problem with the Virgin vehicle is still unsure. So, there is a possibility that the possible defect will need additional repair, but it could also go the other way--no fixing required. 

As such, Branson said that his space firm is imposing the postponement of the commercial research mission out of an "abundance of caution." 

Read More: Richard Branson to Beat Jeff Bezos, Blue Origins in Launching to Orbit with Virgin Galactic's July 11 Flight

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Written by Teejay Boris

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