Waverider Breaks Apart About A Half-Minute Into Test Flight | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

** Airborne/NBAA2014 10.24.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne/NBAA2014 10.24.14 **
** Airborne/NBAA2014 10.22.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne/NBAA2014 10.22.14 **
** Airborne/NBAA2014 10.21.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne/NBAA2014 10.21.14 **
** Airborne/NBAA2014 10.20.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne/NBAA2014 10.20.14 **

Thu, Aug 16, 2012

Waverider Breaks Apart About A Half-Minute Into Test Flight

USAF Officials Point To A Faulty Control Fin On The Aircraft

The X-51 Waverider hypersonic aircraft failed fairly spectacularly during a test flight Tuesday. The experimental unmanned aircraft reportedly broke apart over the Pacific ocean just 31 seconds after it launched from the wing of a B-52.

Reuters reports that, according to a statement released by the Air Force, a problem was detected with one of the aircraft's control fins about 16 seconds after its rocket motor ignited. When the rocket separated from the aircraft so that the scramjet could boost it to hypersonic speeds, the fin failed, and control was lost. The Waverider went down in the Pacific Ocean near Point Magu northwest of Los Angeles, according to Daryl Mayer, a spokesman for the 88th Air Base Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio.

The Air Force had hoped for a flight duration of five minutes, but only got 31 seconds, and only about half of that in controlled flight. It initially stayed on course using the fins on the rocket motor, but when those separated from the rest of the aircraft, control was lost, the Air Force said. The flight plan called for the aircraft to go down in the ocean, and it is considered unrecoverable.

This was the third test flight of the X-51. There is one more of the hypersonic experimental aircraft in the Air Force inventory. The aircraft in the previous test flew at speeds up to Mach 5 for three minutes before it went down in the ocean, which was the planned end to the flight profile. The Air Force is continuing to analyze the data from Tuesday's flight, and has not made a determination whether it will attempt to fly the fourth aircraft.

(Image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force)

FMI: www.af.mil

Advertisement

More News

Airborne 10.24.14: AML's Innovations, NASA Preps For Mars, LightHawk Saves

Also: AW609 Pilots Honored, Airbus' VIP Cabin, FreeFlight's FTX-200, Quicksilver S-LSA Milestone During our visit this week to NBAA 2014, Jim Campbell had a chance to talk with Mar>[...]

Airborne at NBAA-10.22.14: Legacy 500, Universal InSight, BendixKing AeroWave

Also: GE Honda, Sagem's Active SideStick, Syberjet Update, Techno Aerospace Knows How to Party The FAA handed over certification papers for Embraer's Legacy 500 executive jet durin>[...]

Airborne 10.24.14: AML's Innovations, NASA Preps For Mars, LightHawk Saves

Also: AW609 Pilots Honored, Airbus' VIP Cabin, FreeFlight's FTX-200, Quicksilver S-LSA Milestone During our visit this week to NBAA 2014, Jim Campbell had a chance to talk with Mar>[...]

AD: Pacific Aerospace Limited Airplanes

AD NUMBER: 2014-21-02 PRODUCT: Pacific Aerospace Limited Model FU24-954 and FU24A-954 airplanes.>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (10.25.14)

The Canard Zone An online forum by and for owners and builders of canard aircraft.>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2014 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC