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Man in the Arena

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Fifty-three years ago this month, Mercury Astronaut M. Scott Carpenter orbited the Earth three times aboard his Aurora 7 Mercury spacecraft. In doing so, Carpenter became the second American to reach Earth orbit. Project Mercury was America’s first manned spaceflight program. A total of six (6) flights took place between… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

The Original Rocket Man

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Eighty years ago this month, pioneering rocket scientist Robert H. Goddard and staff fired a liquid-fueled rocket to a record altitude of 7,500 feet above ground level. The record-setting flight took place at Roswell, New Mexico. Robert Hutchings Goddard was born in Worcester, Massachusetts on Thursday, 05 October 1882. He… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

A Bad Day at the Office

M2-F2 accident5/10/67NASA DFRC

Forty-eight years ago this week, NASA’s experimental M2-F2 lifting body flight research aircraft was demolished in a horrific landing mishap on Rogers Dry Lake at Edwards Air Force Base. Although critically injured, NASA test pilot Bruce A. Peterson survived the mishap. A lifting body is a wingless aircraft wherein the… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, Final Flight, History

Freedom 7

Freedom 7 Featured Image

Fifty-four years ago today, United States Navy Commander Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr. became the first American to be launched into space. Shepard named his Mercury spacecraft Freedom 7. Officially designated as Mercury-Redstone 3 (MR-3) by NASA, the mission was America’s first true attempt to put a man into space. MR-3… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

The Winged-Horse Delivers

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Twenty-five years ago this month, the Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC) orbited a PegSat satellite using the then-new Pegasus 3-stage launch vehicle. This historic event marked the first successful implementation of the air-launched satellite launcher concept. The concept of air-launch dates back to the 1940’s and the early days of United… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Ryan X-13 Vertijet

Ryan X-13 Featured Image

Fifty-eight years ago this month, the USAF/Ryan X-13 Vertijet completed history’s first vertical-to horizontal-back to vertical flight of a jet-powered Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft. This event took place at Edwards Air Force Base, California with Ryan Chief Test Pilot Peter F. Girard at the controls. The X-13 Vertijet… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

STS-1: Hail Columbia!

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Thirty-four years ago this month, the United States successfully launched the Space Shuttle Columbia into orbit about the Earth. It was the maiden flight of the Nation’s Space Transportation System (STS). The Space Shuttle was unlike any manned space vehicle ever flown. A giant aircraft known as the Orbiter was… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

The Original Seven

Original Seven Featured Image

Fifty-six years ago this week, NASA held a press conference in Washington, D.C. to introduce the seven men selected to be Project Mercury Astronauts. They would become known as the Mercury Seven or Original Seven. Project Mercury was America’s first manned spaceflight program. The overall objective of Project Mercury was… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Scramjet Speed Record

X-43A Flight 2 Featured Image

Eleven years ago this month, the NASA X-43A scramjet-powered flight research vehicle reached a record speed of over 4,600 mph (Mach 6.83). The test marked the first time in the annals of aviation that a flight-scale scramjet accelerated an aircraft in the hypersonic Mach number regime. NASA initiated a technology… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Inaugural Gemini Mission

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Fifty years ago this week, Gemini III was launched into Earth orbit with astronauts Vigil I. “Gus” Grissom and John W. Young onboard. The 3-orbit mission marked the first time that the United States flew a multi-man spacecraft. Project Mercury was America’s first manned spaceflight series. Project Apollo would ultimately… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History
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