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8 Days in a Garbage Can

Fifty-four years ago this month, NASA astronauts Leroy Gordon “Gordo” Cooper and Charles M. “Pete” Conrad set a new spaceflight endurance record during the flight of Gemini 5. It was the third of ten (10) missions in the historic Gemini spaceflight series. The motto for the mission was “Eight Days… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Long Lonely Leap

Fifty-nine years ago this month, USAF Captain Joseph W. Kittinger, Jr. successfully completed a daring parachute jump from 102,800 feet (19.5 miles). The historic bailout took place over the Tularosa Basin of New Mexico. Kittinger’s jump was the final mission of the three-jump Project Excelsior flight research effort which focused… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Loud Bird

Sixty-four years ago this month, the USAF/Republic XF-84H experimental turboprop fighter took to the air on its maiden flight. The test sortie was flown at Edwards Air Force Base with Republic test pilot Henry G. “Hank” Beaird, Jr. at the controls. The XF-84H was an experimental variant of Republic Aviation’s… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Mission Accomplished

Fifty years ago today, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Alden Armstrong, Edwin Eugene Aldrin, Jr., and Michael Collins returned safely to the Earth to bring to a close the first space mission to land men on the lunar surface. With their safe return, President John F. Kennedy’s inspired national goal of… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Launch Into History

Fifty years ago today, the epic flight of Apollo 11, the first mission to land men on the Moon, began with launch from the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) at Merritt Island, Florida. Nearly 1-million people gathered around America’s famous space complex to witness the historic event. An estimated 1-billion viewers… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Liberty Bell Seven

Fifty-eight years ago this month, Mercury Seven Astronaut Vigil I. “Gus” Grissom, Jr. became the second American to go into space. Grissom’s suborbital mission was flown aboard a Mercury space capsule that he named Liberty Bell 7. The United States first manned space mission was flown on Friday, 05 May… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

“That Was a Ride!”

Fifty-seven years ago this month, USAF Major Robert M. White flew the North American X-15 hypersonic research aircraft to a record altitude of 314,750 feet (51.8 nautical miles). In doing so, he became the first X-15 pilot to be awarded USAF Astronaut Wings. The North American X-15 was the first… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Knight’s Edge

Sixty-two years ago this week, USAF Major William F. “Pete” Knight made an emergency landing in X-15 No. 1 at Mud Lake, Nevada. Knight somehow managed to save the hypersonic aircraft following a complete loss of electrical power as the vehicle passed through 107,000 feet during the climb. The famed… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Nike Hercules Deployment

Sixty-one years ago this month, the United States Army Nike Hercules air defense missile system was first deployed in the continental United States. The second-generation surface-to-air missile was designed to intercept and destroy hostile ballistic missiles. The Nike Program was a United States Army project to develop a missile capable… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Crusader III First Flight

Sixty-one years ago this month, the USN/Vought XF8U-3 Crusader III interceptor prototype took off on its maiden test flight at Edwards Air Force Base, California. Vought chief test pilot John W. Konrad was at the controls of the advanced high performance aircraft. The Vought XF8U-3 was designed to intercept and… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History
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