Holidays Push Back Da Vinci Tests

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Well, when you're running a space program with mostly volunteers, you have to expect some hiccups. The da Vinci Project, a Canadian effort to launch a civilian space flight, has pushed back test flights because of the looming holiday season. "Over the holidays, some people become extremely available and other people become totally unavailable," said project leader Brian Feeney. Feeney is now targeting January to begin test flights from Kindersley, Saskatchewan, which isn't at its best in January. A helium balloon will first hoist the capsule before rocket engines ignite to boost it to an altitude of 100 kilometers. Feeney plans to fly the manned flights himself.