SpaceShipOne Flies Into The Smithsonian

The first private vehicle to make it to space, SpaceShipOne, has been donated to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. SpaceShipOne, designed by aviation designer Burt Rutan and financed by Microsoft's Paul Allen, went to space twice last year and captured the $10M Ansari X Prize for private space exploration. SpaceShipOne will be exhibited at the National Air and Space Museum. Rutan is now working with Richard Branson to create Virgin Galactic, a space tourism company to develop commercial space flight service. SpaceShipOne has spurred a number of other firms to also reach space. Other local companies attempting to reach space include El Segundo-based SpaceX, a firm headed by Elon Musk, founder of PayPal.