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X-43A Mach 10 Mission Scrubbed For Today

Technicians in front of NASA's third X-43A scramjet go over a pre-flight checklist on Nov. 15, 2004. NASA photo by Tom Tschida.
Edwards AFB CA (SPX) Nov 16, 2004
NASA's third X-43A hypersonic research mission has been scrubbed for today due to technical glitches with X-43A instrumentation. When the issues were addressed, not enough time remained in the launch window.

Another flight attempt will be made tomorrow. Tomorrow's launch window for the X-43A/Pegasus combination will be from 2-4 p.m., PST.

The high-risk, unpiloted 12-foot-long scramjet-powered vehicle is to be dropped from the wing of the B-52B over the Pacific Ocean at an altitude of 40,000 feet, then boosted to the test altitude of nearly 110,000 feet by its modified Pegasus booster rocket.

Following separation from the booster, the X-43A will fly briefly under its own power at nearly 10 times the speed of sound, or 7,000 mph.

The flight is part of the Hyper-X program, a research effort designed to demonstrate air-breathing propulsion technologies for access to space and high-speed flight within the atmosphere. It will provide unique in-flight data on hypersonic air-breathing engine technologies that have large potential pay-offs.

Flight schedule information will be updated periodically as new information becomes available.

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NASA Aiming For Speed Record In Next Scramjet Test
Washington (AFP) Nov 14, 2004
NASA on Monday will conduct the final and fastest test flight of its pilotless X-43A hypersonic research aircraft, aiming to send it zooming across the Pacific Ocean at about 10 times the speed of sound - almost 3.2 kilometers (two miles) per second.

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