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Photos: Virgin Galactic's 1st SpaceShipTwo Powered Flight Test

Close-Up of SpaceShipTwo During First Rocket-Powered Flight

Virgin Galactic

Frame from SpaceShipTwo Boom Camera during first rocket-powered flight on April 29, 2013, over the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Blasts Into the Upper Atmosphere

MarsScientific.com and Clay Center Observatory

Virgin Galactic conducted a historic first supersonic test flight of SpaceShipTwo on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo First Supersonic Test Flight

Richard Branson/Virgin Galactic

Founder of Virgin Group Richard Branson posted a photo of the SpaceShipTwo first supersonic test flight in the Mojave desert on April 29, 2013. He wrote: "This is a momentous day and the single most important flight test to date for our Virgin Galactic program. What a feeling to be on the ground with all the team in Mojave to witness Virgin Galactic go faster than the speed of sound." [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Lands After First Supersonic Test Flight

Bill Deaver/Deaver-Wiggins and Associates

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo lands in the Mojave Desert, CA, after its historic first supersonic test flight on April 29, 2013. [See full story.]

SpaceShipTwo and Chase Plane

Bill Deaver/Deaver-Wiggins and Associates

A small chase plane follows Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo as it completes its historic first supersonic test flight on April 29, 2013, in Mojave, CA. [See full story.]

SpaceShipTwo Lands

Bill Deaver/Deaver-Wiggins and Associates

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo lands in the Mojave Desert, CA, after its historic first supersonic test flight on April 29, 2013. [See full story.]

Sir Richard Branson & Burt Rutan at First SpaceShipTwo Supersonic Test Flight

Mark Greenberg/Virgin Galactic

Sir Richard Branson & Burt Rutan share a moment after the success of Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo breaking the speed of sound, on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Sir Richard Branson and "Forger" aka Mark Stucky

Mark Greenberg/Virgin Galactic

Sir Richard Branson & 'Forger' aka Mark Stucky, pilot of SpaceShipTwo, congratulate each other after the completion of SS2's first rocket-powered flight on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo First Supersonic Test Flight

Kenneth Brown/Aerospace Photography

Virgin Galactic conducted a historic first supersonic test flight of SpaceShipTwo on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo First Supersonic Test Flight

Kenneth Brown/Aerospace Photography

Virgin Galactic conducted a historic first supersonic test flight of SpaceShipTwo on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo First Supersonic Test Flight

Kenneth Brown/Aerospace Photography

Virgin Galactic conducted a historic first supersonic test flight of SpaceShipTwo on April 29, 2013, in the Mojave Desert, CA. [See full story.]

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Tom Chao
Tom Chao has contributed to SPACE.com as a producer and writer since 2000. As a writer and editor, he has worked for the Voyager Company, Time Inc. New Media, HarperCollins and Worth Publishers. He has a bachelor’s degree in Cinema Production from the University of Southern California, and a master’s degree from NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Tom on Google+.