Insect-small MAVs – Close to hummingbird performance!

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X-51A WaveRider speed duration record at around Mach 5 – May 26, 2010

The X-51A WaveRider maintained its speed for more than 3 minutes. The X-43A reached the speed of Mach 9.8 in 2004. However, that top speed lasted for only 10 seconds.

« The X-51 launched at about 10 a.m. from here, carried under the left wing of an Air Force Flight Test Center B-52 Stratofortress. Then, flying at 50,000 feet over the Point Mugu Naval Air Warfare Center Sea Range, it was released. Four seconds later an Army Tactical Missile solid rocket booster accelerated the X-51 to about Mach 4.8 mach before it and a connecting interstage were jettisoned. The launch and separation were normal », Mr. Brink said. (www.af.mil courtesy)

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Jet fuel R&D

Burning Passion Mark Laber, left, a University of Dayton research partner, examines the expansion of aircraft seals using synthetic fuels. One of the uses of current aviation fuel is to swell seals found throughout the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Desiree N. Palacios)

Airman Magazine – Jet fuel is strange. It needs to have seemingly contradictory properties to make it useful. It can’t freeze. It can’t have a low flashpoint or easily vaporize. Yet, it must have a tremendous amount of energy for its volume and lubricate and seal fuel lines in aircraft. In the more than 30 years the Air Force has been studying its primary aircraft fuel, known as JP-8, scientists are still learning new things.

READ FULL ARTICLE on www.af.mil

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