By Dennis R Jenkins, Tony Landis, Jay Miller

For some time, it appeared the sequence of experimental airplane backed via the U.S. govt had run its direction. among the past due Nineteen Forties and the overdue Seventies, nearly thirty designations have been allotted to plane intended to discover new flight regimes or untried applied sciences. Then, mostly, it ended. yet there has been a resurgence within the mid- to past due- Nineties, and as we input the fourth yr of the recent millennia, the designations are as much as X-50.

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Louis, Missouri. The X-45 unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) is a tailless, 27-foot-long, jet-powered aircraft with a 34-foot wingspan. The vehicle incorporates a thrust vectoring system for yaw control, thus eliminating the need for vertical stabiliz­ ers, reducing the drag and radar cross-section. The UCAV System Demonstration Program is a joint DARPA/USAF/Boeing effort to demonstrate the technical feasibility for a UCAV system to conduct various strike missions within the emerging global command and control architecture.

S. Navy. After demonstrating its basic handling qualities, most of the X-22A flights were oriented towards advancing the science of V/STOL flight, not the specific aircraft configuration itself. By the end of its long-lived test program, the X-22A had made a num­ ber of contributions, but perhaps the most significant was its ability to serve as a V/STOL analog for various advanced sensors and instrumentation destined for other V/STOL aircraft. The ducted-fan configuration itself proved quite workable, although it has not been selected for any further aircraft to date.

The X-44 is unlikely to fly before 2007, although the F-22 program will retire the first and second flying prototypes long before then. The X-44 technology, combined with fluidic nozzles and supersonic-cruise aerodynamics, could lead to a generation of high-performance, very stealthy aircraft, with exceptionally high aerodynamic efficiency. 54 American X-Vehicles: An Inventory X-1 to X-50 The Boeing Company X-45 First Flight: 22 May 2002 Sponsors: DARPA, USAF, Boeing Last Flight: Not Applicable Fastest Flight: Unknown Total Flights: On-going Highest Flight: Unknown The first X-45A UCAV (Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle) at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center.

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American X-Vehicles: An Inventory-X-1 to X-50 by Dennis R Jenkins, Tony Landis, Jay Miller
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