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Satnews Daily
June 4th, 2014

Airbus Defence and Space—End-Of-Flight Phase Demo Success (Spacecraft)

[SatNews] The tests have now been completed for Airbus Defence and Space’s SpacePlane demonstrator in the South China Sea.

Image is copyright and courtesy of Airbus Defence and Space / Astrium SAS2014

Held on May 1 - 4, the tests of the Airbus Defence and Space’s SpacePlane demonstrator validated the dynamic flight conditions encountered in the end-of-flight phase following a return from space. The tests, supported by the Singapore Economic Development Board, occurred 100 kilometers off the coast of Singapore and involved a fleet of seven ships. The quarter-scale demonstrator used in the tests was built in partnership with HOPE Technik and Airbus Group Innovations, the corporate network of research centres of Airbus Group.

After being winched from the barge by an AS350 B3eEcureuil helicopter operated by Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia, the SpacePlane demonstrator was released at a height of around 3,000 meters. The craft was then piloted from the barge as it made its return to the ground, ending its flight at sea before being picked up as planned a few hours later.

Video images of this test are available for download at http://www.airbusdefenceandspace.com/bcr