Though cancelled in April of 2002, three test vehicles were created: two for drop tests and one for an orbital reentry test. The one pictured above, V-132, was dropped from a B-52 for several tests at Edwards Air Force Base. This past week it made its way to the
Friday, November 6, 2009
X-38 On the Move
The Field Guide welcomes the X-38 to its data base. The X-38 would have been the precursor for the Crew Return Vehicle, a stubby winged spacecraft that would have been parked at the International Space Station and used as an orbital lifeboat in case of an emergency. Based on the earlier X-24 lifting body created by the US Air Force (even including the bulbous cockpit canopy - it was easier to use the same wind tunnel data as the X-24), it would carry seven crew members back into the atmosphere, then deploy the largest canopy parachute ever tested to land on skids at a predetermined location.