With the introduction of X-57, NASA has resurrected Its history X-Plan Program-a First aid for experimental aircraft that began with chuck yeager’s famous Supersonic flight in the bell X-1. Not all of this cutting – edge Technology went into full production, but their tests introduced many breakthrough in flight science. Here’s glimpse at the past and future of the historic X-Plane program.
1. BELL X-1
Piloted by Chuck Yeager, the Bell X-1 was the first aircraft to break the sound barrier.
2. BELL X-2
The “starbuster” became the first aircraft to exceed march 3, and also broke the altitude record flying 24 miles above the ground.
3. CONVAIR X-16
The modified B-36 Bomber was meant to test nuclear powered flight. the project, which took 15 years and cost $1 billion was cancelled by president Kennedy.
4. NORTH AMERICAN X-15
The first manned hypersonic plane still holds the record for greatest speed at march 6.7 and highest altitude at a subordinate 108 km (67 mi). it was the first reusable manned spacecraft in history.
5. HILLER X-18
The forerunner of today’s tilt wing VSTOL capable plan such as the V-22 Osprey which was introduced into Military Service in 2007.
6. BOEING X-20
The “dyna-soar” was never built, but its concept as a reusable spaceplane would inspire NASA’s space shuttle and Virgin Galactic’s spaceship two.
7. GURUMAN X-29
Joint project of Nasa the US air force and DARPA the x29 was made from an F-5 fighter airframe test the forward-swept wing Configuration and technologies for aircraft control and handling.
8. MCDONNELL-DOUGLAS X-36
Unmanned prototypes were built and fighter-tested by a remote pilot in a “virtual cockpit,” proving that a tailless fighter jet could have improved maneuverability compared to traditional designs.
9. LOCKHEED MARTIN X-35
This X-plane prototype won the competition for the joint strike Fighter program. It entered production as the F-35 Lightning II with three variants for the US air force, the navy and marines.
10. BOEING X-45
A DARPA Project developed by boeing’s Phantom works, the X-45 is a concept demonstrator for the next generation of unmanned combat air vehicles.
11. X-57 ”MAXWELL”
The first “X-plane” designated aircraft in a decade, the X-57 or “Maxwell” will use a new wing geometry and 14 electric motor to test new methods of Energy efficiency.
A Future X-plane project is the Quiet Supersonic Technology (QueSST) program which will test new technology for “low boom” Supersonic passenger flight.
13. HYBRID WING BODY (HWB)
An updated piloted version of boeing’s X-48 hybrid wing body design, which is extremely aerodynamic, fuel efficient, and quiet. The ultimate purpose is to develop commercial uses for the novel flight configuration.