NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
X-38 aircraft descending under its steerable parafoil parachute after being released from a US Air Force B-52 bomber. This unpiloted aircraft is part of an effort to build a Crew Return Vehicle (CRV) for the International Space Station (ISS). If there was an emergency on the ISS, the CRV would glide through the atmosphere before deploying a parachute to slow its descent, followed by its steerable parachute. Here, the X-38 was released at a height of 7km. The desert can be seen below. This test flight took place at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center in California, USA, on 6 February 1999.
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