Virgin Galactic is an American spaceflight company within the Virgin Group. It is developing commercial spacecraft and aims to provide suborbital spaceflights to space tourists. Virgin Galactic's suborbital spacecraft are air launched from beneath a carrier airplane known as White Knight Two.
The Scaled Composites Model 339 SpaceShipTwo (SS2) is an air-launched suborbital spaceplane type designed for space tourism. It is manufactured by The Spaceship Company, a California-based company owned by Virgin Galactic.
The first generation engine was developed by Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) from the late 2000s to may 2014. It was first ignited in flight during a SpaceShipTwo test launch in April 2013. In 2014 Virgin Galactic ended contract with SNC and replaced it with its own internally developed hybrid motor.