X-Prize AMA: I am Burt Rutan, designer of the world’s first private
spaceship (SpaceShipOne), and the first aircraft to fly around the world
without stopping or refueling (Voyager). AMA!
Good morning, Reddit! This is Burt Rutan here to answer your questions.
While I am best known for just those two projects, I am known in
aviation circles for an unprecedented list of 45 other research aircraft
developed by the two companies I founded and ran over a 43-year career.
My first company, Rutan Aircraft Factory, also developed 14 other
research aircraft and marketed plans for five of them so individuals
could build their own personal airplanes. Or, you may, know me because
my small team at my second company, Scaled Composites in the Mojave
Desert covertly developed an entire Manned Space Program, and flew three
of the world’s five manned space flights in 2004. You can read about me
at burtrutan.com, or in a new book, How to Make a Spaceship, by Julian
Guthrie. “Black Sky”, an award-winning 2004 documentary by Discovery
TV described our private, non-Government space program. I will be back
at 3 pm ET to answer your questions, Ask Me Anything!