The European Suborbital Shuttle

Following the trail of SpaceShipTwo, Dassault has been working on a new suborbital civilian spacecraft. Not to be confused with the Future High-Altitude High-Speed Transport 20XX, the new aircraft could be an 11-ton vehicle derived from their VEHRA satellite launcher.

An artist rendering of VEHRA

VEHRA and VSH - the name of the new civilian vehicle - are both air launched and "based on the X-38 experimental lifting body from NASA, for which Dassault Aviation had defined the shape." While VEHRA will have heavy versions capable of putting a 7-ton payload in low orbit, VSH is only designed to bring tourists into the edge of space, flying at Mach 3.5.

If you don't have the money for this kind of trip, don't worry. It looks like you have plenty of time to save those purple rupees, as the aircraft is still in the first stages of development. [Dassault via Flight Global]

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