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Bell X-1 supersonic aircraft being launched from a B50 aircraft at 35,000 feet. A Bell X-1 was flown by Charles 'Chuck' Yeager on 14th October 1947 and was the first aircraft to break the speed of sound. The X-1 was powered by a four-chamber XLR-11 rocket engine that generated 26.5 kilonewtons of thrust. This pushed the aircraft to a speed of 1078 kilometres per hour at an altitude of 12,800 metres - equivalent to 1.015 times the speed of sound.
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