Failure investigations increase an understanding of scramjet integration
Just 15.5 sec. after it was released from the Boeing B-52 mother ship over the Pacific, one of four control fins on the Boeing X-51A WaveRider hypersonic demonstrator unlocked. The unpowered fin swung fully trailing-edge down and stayed there as the booster accelerated the X-51A cruiser to its planned release at Mach 4.9. At 2 sec. before separation, the other three control fins unlocked and powered up as planned, but the fourth did not respond. Unable to overcome the stuck fin, the ...
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