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Virgin Orbit Inks Deal With L3Harris To Acquire Two Boeing 747-400 Airframes

Satellite launch company Virgin Orbit Holdings, Inc. (VORB) announced Tuesday it has signed an agreement with L3Harris Technologies, Inc. (LHX) to acquire two Boeing 747-400 airframes to support the growing need for U.S. national security and allies' satellite launch demands.

L3Harris will modify one of the newly acquired aircrafts to serve as an additional airborne launch pad for Virgin Orbit's small satellite launch service, with delivery expected in 2023.

L3Harris will also overhaul the platform with a new cargo configuration, which is expected to allow Virgin Orbit to deliver its rockets and ground support equipment in the same aircraft that will launch from foreign spaceports.

The companies previously collaborated to produce Virgin Orbit's flagship aircraft "Cosmic Girl," the first customized 747-400 aircraft to carry and deploy payloads to Low Earth Orbit under Virgin Orbit's LauncherOne program.

Virgin Orbit's Cosmic Girl has completed three commercial launches, successfully deploying 26 customer satellites into orbit for multiple commercial, government and military customers.

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