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Sat, Apr 01, 2023

Virgin Orbit Sees Renewed Success as Hypersonic Weapons Platform

"Cosmic Girl" to Serve as Missile Launcher in Skies Over Ukraine

Special 04.01.23 Parody Edition: Virgin Orbit's mission has changed slightly from its original, pacifistic mission to seed the skies with affordably delivered civilian satellites after a surprising contract was announced.

The 747 used for previous mid-air rocket launches, "Cosmic Girl", has been retained for use by Aerojet Rocketdyne for use as a mobile, long-range, hypersonic missile launcher. The modified 747 was chosen to be a test bed after increasing use of similar Russian and Chinese ordnance spurred the competitive instincts of defense contractors across the country. The contract comes at a good time, with Virgin Orbit antsy about their future prospects following the unsuccessful satellite launch on January 9th, 2023. 

"Well, we had the best of intentions, but to be frank, the money's just too good to pass up," said one anonymous Virgin exec.

"I know our founder, Richard Branson, really wanted the company to bring people together and provide cost-effective solutions to operators looking to launch a satellite constellation... but lobbing missiles just pays so much better." 

The source tried to make it clear that direct combat usage wasn't yet in the plans for Cosmic Girl, though it was brought up. "Well, some countries from an allied nation actually inquired about using our aircraft as a kind of "missile truck" for long-range, air-launched ICBM's, but their bid simply wasn't as competitive as the one from our new friends at Aerojet Rocketdyne. Maybe once this program is complete we'll revisit the idea."

FMI: www.virginorbit.com

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