View Full Version : Discussion: Board Reveals Why the X-43A Failed

2003-Jul-24, 03:45 AM
SUMMARY: A NASA investigation board released its findings on Wednesday that revealed why the X-34A Hyper-X prototype failed during a test on June 2, 2001. The investigators found that various miscalculations built into the prototype collectively caused the mishap. The X-34A is an experimental program to develop an air breathing hypersonic aircraft that could eventually fly up to 10 times the speed of sound. The X-34A was attached to the front of a Pegasus rocket and launched from a modified B-52 bomber. Only 13 seconds into its flight the aircraft went out of control, and was destroyed.

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2003-Jul-24, 08:06 PM
How would it be to be the range safety officer who got to press the button to blow that thing up? I wonder if you would get in trouble for smiling while you pressed the button. It's amazing how fragile flight is. It takes so little for everything to go wrong. Even for the experts!