On This Date

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May 28, 1956: The X-13 made its first flight in vertical mode at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., reaching a height of 50 feet.
 
 
 
 

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May 29, 1956: The Chance Vought Regulus II (XSSM-N-9) made its first flight after a 2.3 mile takeoff run from the lakebed at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. This test version of the Navy jet-propelled cruise missile was fitted with a tricycle landing gear and, according to the Edwards history office it had a tendency to outrun its change and airborne control aircraft.
 
 
 
 
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May 30, 1958: the Douglas DC-8 four-engine passenger liner was flown for the first time, at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., piloted by A.G. Heimerdinaer.
 
 
 
 
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May 30, 1972: The Northrop YA-9A Cobra specialized ground attack aircraft, made its first flight, flown by company test pilot Lew Nelson. The aircraft subsequently lost the A-X competitive prototype flyoff against the A-10, and never went into production.
 
 
 
 
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May 31, 1993: The 410th Test Squadron was assigned to Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, Calif., and assumed responsibility for the F-117 test program. The aircraft and personnel of Detachment 1, 412th Test Wing, were transferred to the 410th.
 
 
 
 
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June 1, 1951: Air Force aeromedical research Maj. John P. Stapp was strapped into a rocket sled which was poised on a 2,000-foot deceleration track at North Base, Edwards AFB, Calif. Moments later, 4,000 pounds of rocket thrust blasted him down the track and into the braking system (from 88.6 mph to a full stop in 18 feet). For a brief instant, he endured 48 G’s, with a rate of onset of about 500 G’s per second. In other words, his body had absorbed an impact of more than four tons. Prior to Stapp’s sled experiments, conventional medical wisdom had maintained that the human body could probably survive no more than 17-18 instantaneous Gs.
 
 
 
 
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June 2, 1989: The B-1B Combined Test Force at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., completed the bomber’s Developmental Test and Evaluation program after 592 test flights totaling 3,015 flight test hours on nine different aircraft.
 
 
 
 
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June 3, 1949: The XF-90 made its first flight, flown by Lockheed test pilot Tony LeVier. The XF-90 was Lockheed’s entry into the Air Force’s Penetration Fighter competition but never went into production due to being underpowered.
 
 
 
 
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June 4, 1969: Lockheed’s C-5A Galaxy Number Two, the world’s largest transport aircraft, arrived at the Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., for joint Air Force-contractor Category I and II testing.
 
 
 
 
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June 5, 1948: Northrop’s YB-49 Number Two, a prototype flying wing jet bomber, went out of control during its 25th flight and crashed about 10 miles northwest of Muroc Air Force Base, Calif. Three officers and two civilian aircrew were killed. The pilot was Maj. Daniel Forbes Jr., and the co-pilot was Capt. Glen Edwards. The aircraft was testing stall recovery performance when it suffered catastrophic structural failure with the outer wing panels tearing off. In December 1949, Muroc was renamed Edwards Air Force Base in honor of Captain Edwards.
 
 
 

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