Credit: NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: X-15A-2 hypersonic aircraft landing in 1968. This aircraft had an ablative coating which helped it set several speed records by protecting it from the high temperatures associated with hypersonic flight (above Mach 5). Developed by the US Air Force and NASA, the X-15 was a rocket-powered research aircraft designed to investigate flight at hypersonic speeds. Three X-15s flew a total of 199 missions between 1959 and 1968. The X-15 was carried into the air by a converted B-52 bomber and released at high altitude. The pilot then ignited the craft's rocket motor. It was the first plane to reach the edge of outer space and set records for the fastest manned aircraft (7,274 kilometres per hour, or Mach 6.72).

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Keywords: 1900s, 1960s, 1967, 20 seconds or greater, 20th century, aeronautical, aeronautics, aeroplane, air speed record, aircraft, airplane, airspeed record, altitude, american, aviation, b-52, boeing b-52, cockpit, dfrc, dryden flight research center, engineering, escort, experimental aircraft, fastest, flying, high, high altitude, historical, history, hypersonic flight, in flight, land, landing, nasa, no-one, nobody, north america, north american, north american aviation, pioneer, pioneering, plane, record, research, rocket plane, rocket powered, rocket-powered, sky, space flight, spaceflight, special, speed, supersonic, touch down, touch-down, touchdown, united states, us, us air force, usa, x 15, x-15, x-15a-2, x-plane, x-planes, x15, x15-a2, x15a2

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X-15 hypersonic aircraft landing, 1968

K005/2918 Rights Managed

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Duration: 00:00:29.04

Frame size: 640x480

Frame rate: 15

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