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High Speed Research Station

NACA High Speed Flight Research Station in the early 1950s

Movie Number   EM-0056-02
Movie Date   NACA High Speed Flight Research Station in the early 1950s
Formats   160x120 QuickTime Movie (1.2 MB)
320x240 QuickTime Movie (2.4 MB)
480x360 QuickTime Movie (3.5 MB)
640x480 QuickTime Movie (5.8 MB)
Dryden facilities Still photos of Dryden facilities are available in several resolutions at

This 33 second movie clip shows views of the NACA High Speed Flight Research Station during the early 1950s in Muroc, California.

The Dryden Flight Research Center, NASA's premier installation for aeronautical flight research, celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1996. Dryden is the "Center of Excellence" for atmospheric flight operations. The Center's charter is to research, develop, verify and transfer advanced aeronautics, space and related technologies. It is located at Edwards, California, on the western edge of the Mojave Desert, 80 miles north of Los Angeles.

In addition to carrying out aeronautical research, the Center also supports the space shuttle program as a backup landing site and as a facility to test and validate design concepts and systems used in development and operation of the orbiters.

Dryden, a civilian tenant organization within the boundaries of Edwards Air Force Base, is on the northwest edge of Rogers Dry Lake, a 44-square-mile area used for aviation research and test operations since the 1930's. An additional 22 square miles of similar smooth clay surface is provided by nearby Rosamond Dry Lake. The desert environment provides good flying weather an average of 345 days a year, and the absence of large population centers throughout the high desert helps eliminate problems associated with aircraft noise and flight patterns.

Along with a varied fleet of research and support aircraft, Dryden facilities include a high temperature and loads calibration laboratory to ground test aircraft and structural components for the combined effects of loads and heat; a highly developed aircraft flight instrumentation capability; a flight systems laboratory with a diversified capability for avionics system development; a flow visualization facility to study flow patterns on models and small aircraft components; a data analysis facility to process flight research data; and a facility to carry out flight research with remotely piloted vehicles. These facilities have given Dryden pilots, engineers, scientists and technicians a unique and highly specialized capability to conduct flight research programs unmatched anywhere in the world.

Keywords   overview; facility; facilities; Hugh L. Dryden Flight Research Center; Rogers Dry Lake
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