Perhaps Han Solo said it best in Star Wars when, describing his hyper-fast smuggling spaceship the Millennium Falcon, he said, "It may not look like much, but it's got it where it counts."
While the Air Force might take exception to being likened to the Falcon, in reality the platypus-nosed X-51A Waverider hypersonic flight test vehicle really doesn't look like much. But it definitely has it where it counts.
On Tuesday, the unmanned 25-foot-long vehicle will be dropped off of the wing of a converted B-52 bomber off the California coast and try to fly for 300 seconds at science fiction-like speeds of Mach 6, over 4,500 mph - fast enough to fly from New York to London in less than an hour.
M Paul Lloyd wrote:As Mr.S points out the Falcon is essentially a weapon and the passenger potential is just a smoke screen I'm afraid.
Shadowwolf wrote:I'd wager that the filtering down on such will be a long time coming.
M Paul Lloyd wrote:...because the US, in their infinite wisdom, feels that the UK is a bit to risky with regard to foriegn influnces to be allowed full access to the full tech' package.
Shadowwolf wrote:Don't think the motor failed, last I heard it was the departing of a control fin from the rest of it that induced an out of control flight path thus negating the chance of success and necessitating the crafts destruction.
But before it could activate its exotic scramjet engine, which should have taken it to Mach 6, a problem with one of its cruiser control fins caused it to lose balance and crash into the Pacific.
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