[FPSPACE] NASA Scramjet
routier at tig.com.au
Wed Nov 10 02:18:38 EST 2004
> With 'Scramjet,' NASA Shoots for Mach 10
> By Guy Gugliotta
> Washington Post Staff Writer
> Wednesday, November 10, 2004; Page A01
> Under NASA's $250 million Hyper-X program, engineers at Langley Research
> Center here and the Dryden Flight Research Center in Edwards, Calif.,
> designed and built three aluminum scramjet aircraft, each one 12 feet long
> and weighing about 2,800 pounds . Controllers aborted the first test flight
> in 2001 after the rocket booster malfunctioned.
> But the second, on March 24, reached Mach 6.83 (5,200 mph), shattering the
> world speed record for air-breathing, non-rocket aircraft, previously held
> by a jet-powered missile. The highest speeds by manned aircraft were
> achieved by SR-71, the U.S. spy plane known as the "Blackbird," capable
> of flying in excess of Mach 3 (2,300 mph).
Mach 10! Exciting stuff.
Unfortunately, no mention at all here or in any of the American press (or most
of the world press, for that matter) of the Australian HyShot project, which
achieved Mach 7.6 almost 2 years earlier - in July, 2002, and was the first ever
successful flight test of a scramjet. Maybe this is one reason the NASA test is
in Australia. Of course, NE Australia is very big & very empty, so it's
Presumably the later American effort got the world speed record because it "flew
freely" whereas HyShot did its history-making feat in a steep dive and was
really just an in-flight engine ignition test, not a flight test. I can pay
Still, quotes like those on CNN site: "It is the first time a
supersonic-combustion ramjet, or scramjet, which burns hydroxen mixed with
oxygen from the atmosphere, had traveled so fast, flight engineer Lawrence
Huebner told reporters." are just a tad untrue. I hope NASA isn't telling fibs.
and more recently
But hey! Happy we are working with NASA. Mach 10 here we come! Very exciting.
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