This image shows the X-43A hypersonic vehicle. Clicking on this image will show the trajectory the X-43A was suppose to take including air drop from the B-52 plane, ascent by the Hyper-X booster, seperation from the booster and the X-43A free flight.
Click on image for full size
Courtesy of NASA

Hypersonic Vehicle Plummets into Pacific Ocean
News story originally written on June 5, 2001

NASA had three hypersonic vehicles. One of them was being tested on Saturday, June 2, 2000. The vehicle went out of control! NASA figured it was better to blow up the vehicle than to let it get close to land where it might hit something or somebody! So, they blew the vehicle up and the parts fell into the ocean.

Hypersonic means that the vehicles can go five times faster than the speed of sound. That's over 60 times faster than a car usually drives on an open highway!

Now, NASA has two of these vehicles left. They will be flown after NASA can figure out what went wrong with the first one!

Last modified June 5, 2001 by Jennifer Bergman.

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