Encyclopedia Astronautica

American manned spaceplane. Study 2004. X-Prize suborbital spaceplane concept of Kelly Space & Technology, San Bernardino, California.

LB-X was designed by a team led by Michael Gallo of Kelly Space & Technology, San Bernardino, California. In common with other Kelly proposals, the vehicle would be air towed to launch by a 747, accelerate to outer space, then make a horizontal glide landing at any conventional runway. The vehicle was a rocket-powered delta wing glider with a liquid oxygen and kerosene liquid rocket engine. However Kelly, after conducting tow tests with an F-106 fighter, was unable to raise enough funds for development of either the LB-X or their Astroliner orbital vehicle.

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Associated Countries
See also
  • America's Space Prize Following the success of the Ansari X-Prize in motivating flight of the first commercial suborbital manned spacecraft, Robert Bigelow announced the 'America's Space Prize' - $ 50 million - to the first team to fly an orbital manned spacecraft that completes two missions safely and successfully by January 10, 2010. More...
  • X-Prize The X-Prize competition was an attempt to promote commercial civilian spaceflight in a manner similar to the prizes handed out in the early days of aviation. Ten million dollars was to go to the first team to fly a vehicle capable of launching three people into space (defined as an altitude of 100 km in a suborbital trajectory), twice in a two-week period. The vehicle had to be 90% reusable by dry mass. For purposes of the two flights, the competition accepted flight by one person and ballast equivalent to two others at 90 kg per passenger. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Kelly American manufacturer of rockets and spacecraft. Kelly Space and Technology, USA. More...

LB-X Chronology

1998 February 1 - .
  • Kelly demonstrates towing. - . Nation: USA. Program: X-Prize. Spacecraft: LB-X. Summary: Kelly Space & Technology (San Bernardino, CA, USA) successfully demonstrates vehicle towing..

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