Watch Virgin Galactic launch live as four passengers set to hit 50-mile altitude

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    Virgin Galactic has launched its first commercial spaceflight – and you can watch it happen right here.

    Richard Branson's Unity 2 set off from Spaceport America, New Mexico, USA at around 4pm.

    Six people (four crew and two pilots) are onboard and will reach an altitude of nearly 55 miles.

    Among the passengers lucky enough to nab a seat are Pantaleone Carlucci, an engineer at the National Research Council of Italy and Colin Bennett, an astronaut instructor at Virgin Galactic.

    Col. Walter Villadei of the Italian Air Force, who is training for a "future orbital space mission" to the International Space Station, is also onboard along with Lt. Col. Angelo Landolfi, a physician with the Italian Air Force.

    The flight is to last around 90 minutes and is expected to reach supersonic speeds before entering a freefall and gliding back along the runway.

    A total of 13 scientific research experiments are set to be conducted throughout the duration of the flight.

    Seconds after launch, the spaceflight travelled at Mach 1.4, roughly 1,700km/hr, before reaching speeds of Mach 2.8.

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