X-51A crashes

Aug 16, 2012 1 Comment by

This one is kinda close to home.

cool looking aircraft:

(Reuters) – A U.S. military test flight of the experimental hypersonic “Waverider” ended prematurely when the aircraft broke apart in the air over the Pacific Ocean due to a failure with its cruiser control fin, the U.S. Air Force said on Wednesday.

The problem with the fin was identified 16 seconds after a rocket booster on the unmanned X-51A aircraft was ignited to increase its speed, the Air Force said in a statement.

About 15 seconds later, when the X-51A separated from the rocket booster it lost control due to a “faulty control fin,” the statement said.

The aircraft broke apart immediately and fell into the Pacific Ocean near Point Mugu northwest of Los Angeles, said Daryl Mayer, a spokesman for the 88th Air Base Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio.

John Reid

About the author

West Coast senior editor About me: I’ve been involved with RC aircraft since high school and have flown just about everything. I started my RC career with scratch-building, but now like many pilots I rely on ARFs to get me in the air. My main focus is on pylon racing, aerobats, combat and scale warbirds.

One Response to “X-51A crashes”

  1. Brian Millar says:

    We could have saved them millions if they just let us RC builders tinker with the design and put it into the air. These guys have far too much latitude to waste money on experimental planes. I think they keep us out of the loop just to make sure they have jobs. I’d fire the whole lot at this stage due to that.

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