July 23: The HAWK30, a solar-powered high-altitude "cell tower in the sky" made its first test flight at Spaceport America. Testing of the new communications glider will continue at the $8-million facility constructed at the spaceport by its developer. The company now has 35 employees working in the area to support the program.
July 20: Data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey's (SDSS's) most recent project has enabled astrophysicists to create the largest-ever 3-D map of the Universe. Data collection was accomplished during a six-year period at the Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico and the Las Campanas Observatory in Chile (the country, not the pepper). Both observatories have similar 2.5-meter telescopes and are gearing up for the next phase of the SDSS.
June 25: Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo, Unity, completed its second glide test at Spaceport America. This was a higher speed test than the previous glide test at the spaceport, this one reaching Mach 0.85. Unity is now ready to begin powered test flights at Spaceport America, which is at a higher elevation than the previous test site at Mojave, California.
June 22: Virgin Galactic signed a Space Act Agreement with NASA's Johnson Space Center to develop a "private orbital astronaut readiness program" that would handle various aspects of flying private individuals to the station, including identifying potential customers, handling training, and arranging with third parties for transportation to the station.
June 21: Boeing conducted a successful test of the parachute system on its Starliner crew capsule at White Sands Space Harbor.
June 13: Four pilots took Virgin Galactic's mothership, VMS Eve, on two proficiency flights at Spaceport America.
June 12: Spaceport America announced that HAPSMobile, Inc., has signed on to flight test its high-altitude, pseudo satellite, the HAWK30, at the spaceport. HAWK30 is a solar-powered flying wing vehicle designed to stay aloft for 6 months at 65,000 feet altitude to serve as an alternative to cell towers and communications satellites.