Surviving Pilot Was Flung From SpaceShipTwo As It Disintegrated Over Mojave Desert

November 13, 2014 8:13 PM

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The pilot of the Virgin Galactic spaceship that tore apart over the Mojave Desert didn’t know his co-pilot had prematurely unlocked its brakes, though protocol for the test flight required the co-pilot to announce the step, federal investigators said Wednesday.

Pilot Peter Siebold told the National Transportation Safety Board that he was not aware co-pilot Mike Alsbury, who grew up in the Bay Area, had pulled a brake-unlocking lever before the rocket designed one day to fly tourists to the edge of space was done accelerating. Seconds later, SpaceShipTwo be...

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