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X-1B

Bell X-1B fitted with a reaction control system on the lakebed.

 
Photo Number: E58-04105
Photo Date: July 30, 1958
 
Formats: 640x616 JPEG Image (195 KBytes)
1280x1231 JPEG Image (673 KBytes)
3000x2885 JPEG Image (2987 KBytes)
 
Photo
Description:
Bell X-1B fitted with a reaction control system on the lakebed.
 
Project
Description:
The Bell X-1B was a second-generation X-1 used by the U.S. Air Force for pilot familiarization before being turned over to NACA in December 1954. The X-1B had a modified fuselage with greater capacity for fuel tanks, an improved cockpit, and a turbopump fuel system as compared with the X-1. The NACA used the X-1B primarily for aerodynamic heating and reaction-control research from 1956 to 1958.

The aircraft was fitted with special instrumentation for exploratory aerodynamic heating tests. It had over 300 thermocouples installed on it. The X-1B was the first aircraft to fly with a reaction-control system; a prototype of the reaction-control system used on the X-15 and other piloted test aircraft.

The X-1B was given to the Air Force Museum at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Dayton, Ohio, on January 27, 1959, for preservation and display. This aircraft completed a total of 27 glide and powered flights by eight U.S. Air Force and two NACA test pilots. Second-generation X-1 aircraft were 35.8 feet long and had a wingspan of approximately 28 feet.

 
NASA Photo by: NACA
 
Keywords: X-1B; Bell Aircraft Company; NACA; U.S. Air Force; Air Force Museum; Wright-Patterson Air Force Base; heating research; reaction controls
 


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