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NASA Meatball NASA Dryden F-16XL Ship #2 banner
F-16XL Ship #2 during last flight viewed from tanker showing titanium laminar flow glove on left wing F-16XL Ship #2 during last flight viewed from tanker showing titanium laminar flow glove on left wing

Photo Number: EC96-43811-2
Photo Date: November 13, 1996

Formats: 362x480 JPEG Image (63 KBytes)
773x1024 JPEG Image (411 KBytes)
2400x3180 JPEG Image (9,213 KBytes)

Description: Dryden research pilot Dana Purifoy drops NASA F-16XL #848 away from the tanker in the 45th flight in the Supersonic Laminar Flow Control program.

The project demonstrated that laminar--or smooth--airflow could be achieved over a major portion of a wing at supersonic speeds by use of a suction system. The system drew turbulent boundary-layer air through millions of tiny laser-drilled holes in a titanium "glove" fitted to the upper left wing. About 90 hours of flight time were logged by the unique aircraft during the 13-month flight research program, much of it at speeds of Mach 2.

Data acquired during the program will be used to develop a design code calibration database which could assist designers in reducing aerodynamic drag of a proposed second-generation supersonic transport.


Keywords: F-16XL Ship #2; SLFC; Supersonic Laminar Flow Control; smooth; titanium glove; suction


Last Modified: December 22, 2004
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