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NACA Research Aircraft-Bell X-1A, D-558-1, XF-92A, X-5, D-558-2, X-4, and X-3 NACA Research Aircraft-Bell X-1A, D-558-1, XF-92A, X-5, D-558-2, X-4, and X-3

Photo Number: E-2889

Photo Date: Aug. 4, 1953

Formats: 539x480 JPEG Image (106 KBytes)
1150x1024 JPEG Image (469 KBytes)
3000x2670 JPEG Image (3,529 KBytes)


A 1953 photo of some of the research aircraft at the NACA High-Speed Flight Research Station (now known as the the Dryden Flight Research Center). The photo shows the X-3 (center) and, clockwise from left: X-1A (Air Force serial number 48-1384), the third D-558-1 (NACA tail number 142), XF-92A, X-5, D-558-2, and X-4.

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, Calif., on the western edge of the Mojave Desert, 80 miles north of Los Angeles.

Dryden's history dates back to the early fall of 1946, when a group of five aeronautical engineers arrived at what is now Edwards from the NACA's Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory, Hampton, Va. Their goal was to prepare for the X-1 supersonic research flights in a joint NACA-U.S. Army Air Forces-Bell Aircraft Corp. program. NACA--the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics--was the predecessor of today's NASA.

Since the days of the X-1, the first aircraft to fly faster than the speed of sound, the installation has grown in size and significance and is associated with many important developments in aviation -- supersonic and hypersonic flight, wingless lifting bodies, digital fly-by-wire, supercritical and forward-swept wings, and the space shuttles. Its name has changed many times over the years. From 14 November 1949 to 1 July 1954 it bore the name NACA High-Speed Flight Research Station.

NASA Photo by: NASA photo

Keywords: XF-92A Dart; Convair; U.S. Air Force; NACA High-Speed Flight Research Station; X-3; X-1A; D-558-1; X-5; D-558-2; X-4

Last Modified: December 21, 2004
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