Tech & Science It would be the world’s largest airplane. It’s being built by a billionaire. And it’s getting ready to fly.
How many years it took the 23 richest people in the world to go from millionaire to billionaire
The richest people in the world found success at various ages. Facebook cofounderMark Zuckerberg became a billionaire wunderkind at just 23 years old, while Berkshire Hathaway founder Warren Buffett's long-game investing strategies finally cemented his billionaire status at 56 - about 26 years after he first joined the seven-figure club.
COLORADO SPRINGS — The massive airplane that Paul Allen’s aerospace company has been building in the California desert could fly for the first time as soon as this summer, officials said.
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If it flies successfully, Stratolaunch, as the plane is called, would be the largest aircraft ever to take to the skies. At 385 feet long, its wingspan is bigger than the length of a football field and larger than Howard Hughes’s World War II-era Spruce Goose.
Stratolaunch would be used to “air launch” small rockets that could take satellites to orbit. The plane would reach about 35,000 feet, the rockets would drop, fire their engines and then blast into space.
Startolaunch is so big that it has 28 wheels and is powered by six 747 engines and would have a maximum weight at takeoff of 1.3 million pounds. It would be capable of carrying as many as three Pegasus rockets, made by Dulles-based Orbital ATK, into the skies. Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, and company officials told The Washington Post last summer that they are also considering building a massive space shuttle,
Australia's ABC gold refinery gets accreditation from Shanghai Gold Exchange
Australia's ABC gold refinery, the refining division of Pallion Group, has received accreditation from the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE), the group said on Tuesday. All official gold sales within China must occur through the exchange, making it the primary gateway into the world's largest gold market worth over A$341 billion annually, Pallion said.ABC refinery is now one of the seven international companies which have received this accreditation. It is also Australia's only independent refinery accredited by both the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) and the SGE.
But Allen’s main goal is making space more accessible and helping launch constellations of small satellites that could help monitor the health of the planet, track animals, spot illegal fishing and assess the effects of global warning.
Allen’s main question is: “How does this help the world, that’s really what this man [Allen] is all about,” said a company official, who would only speak anonymously.
In a briefing with reporters at the Space Symposium here, company officials said that taxi tests were going well and that they felt confident the plane would soon be able to take to the skies after years of development.
“It’s just a giant wing, and that thing is just going to jump off the runway,” the official said.
Skeptics have wondered whether Allen made the plane too big at a time when the industry is moving to launching more small satellites, instead of large ones that require powerful launch vehicles. But officials said they have plans, including the Black Ice concept, that they will unveil closer to the plane's first flight.
Bruce Gordon rejected Ten request to pitch in for cricket rights .
Bruce Gordon's WIN Corporation knocked back a request to tip in $5 million a year to help pump up Ten Network's offer to Cricket Australia.Bruce Gordon's WIN Corporation knocked back a request to tip in about $5 million a year to help pump-up Ten Network's offer to Cricket Australia, in a move that suggests tension remains between the Bermuda-based billionaire and Ten's new owner.
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