Encyclopedia Astronautica
X-1B



x1b.jpg
X-1B
Credit: NASA
American manned rocketplane. Flown 1952. The X-1A, B, and D were essentially identical rocketplanes intended to reach speeds above Mach 2.

The X-1A and X-1D were destroyed in in-flight explosions; the X-1B survived, training future moon lander Neil Armstrong on its last flights in 1958.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • XLR11 Reaction Motors, Thiokol Lox/Alcohol rocket engine. Out of Production. Launch thrust 26.67 kN. Rocket engine developed for X-1 in 1940s to break the sound barrier and used twenty years later to power experimental lifting bodies. Four combustion chambers. More...

See also
Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Bell American manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. ARC Liquid Propellant Division, Niagara Falls, NY, USA. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Lox/Alcohol Liquid oxygen was the earliest, cheapest, safest, and eventually the preferred oxidiser for large space launchers. Its main drawback is that it is moderately cryogenic, and therefore not suitable for military uses where storage of the fuelled missile and quick launch are required. Alcohol (C2H5OH) was the fuel used for the German V-2 rocket, and the first derivative rocket engines in the United States, Soviet Union, and China used it as well. Better performance was achieved by increasing the alcohol concentration in the post-war engines. But after better-performance rocket-grade kerosene was developed by Rocketdyne in the REAP program of 1953, use of alcohol was abandoned. More...

Bibliography
  • Miller, Ron, The Dream Machines, Krieger, Malabar, Florida, 1993.
  • Zhelyez x-plane book,
  • NASA Report, The hydrogen-peroxide rocket reaction-control system for the X-1B research airplane, Web Address when accessed: here.

X-1B Chronology


1954 August 29 - .
  • X-1B Flight 1 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 12. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 2. Cabin-pressure regulator malfunction causes inner canopy to crack; only low-speed, low-altitude maneuvers made..

1954 September 24 - .
  • X-1B Flight 2 - . Crew: Ridley. Payload: X-1B flight 1. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Ridley. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 1. Glide flight, because of turbopump over-speeding..

1954 October 6 - .
  • X-1B Flight 3 - . Crew: Ridley. Payload: X-1B flight 2. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Ridley. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 2. Glide flight, aborted power flight because of evidence of high lox-tank pressure..

1954 October 8 - .
  • X-1B Flight 4 - . Crew: Murray. Payload: X-1B flight 3. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Murray. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 3. First powered flight..

1954 October 13 - .
  • X-1B Flight 5 - . Crew: Stephens. Payload: X-1B flight 4. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Stephens. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 4..

1954 October 19 - .
  • X-1B Flight 6 - . Crew: Childs. Payload: X-1B flight 5. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Childs. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 5..

1954 October 26 - .
  • X-1B Flight 7 - . Crew: Hanes. Payload: X-1B flight 6. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Hanes. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 6..

1954 November 4 - .
  • X-1B Flight 8 - . Crew: Harer. Payload: X-1B flight 7. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Harer. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 7..

1954 November 26 - .
  • X-1B Flight 9 - . Crew: Holtoner. Payload: X-1B flight 8. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Holtoner. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 8..

1954 November 30 - .
  • X-1B Flight 10 - . Crew: Everest. Payload: X-1B flight 9. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Everest. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 9..

1954 December 2 - .
  • X-1B Flight 11 - . Crew: Everest. Payload: X-1B flight 10. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Everest. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: AF flight 10. Mach 2.3 at 19825 m..

1956 August 14 - .
  • X-1B Flight 12 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 11. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 1. Pilot check; nose landing gear failed on landing, minor damage..

1956 September 7 - .
  • X-1B Flight 13 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 13. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 3. Speed run to 17080 m and mach 1.8. Limited heating data gathered..

1956 September 18 - .
  • X-1B Flight 14 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 14. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 4. Glide flight, due to erratic engine start..

1956 September 28 - .
  • X-1B Flight 15 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 15. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 5. Three-chamber engine run to 18300 m to obtain heating data..

1957 January 3 - .
  • X-1B Flight 16 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 16. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 6. Mach 1.94 aerodynamic heating investigation (end of heating program)..

1957 May 22 - .
  • X-1B Flight 17 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 17. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 7. Control pulses at mach 1.45 at 18300 m. Flight for instrumentation check..

1957 June 7 - .
  • X-1B Flight 18 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 18. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 8. Supersonic maneuvers to mach 1.5 at 18300 m to determine the dynamic and static stability and control characteristics..

1957 June 24 - .
  • X-1B Flight 19 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 19. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 9. Supersonic maneuvers to mach 1.5 at 18300 m to determine the dynamic and static stability and control characteristics..

1957 July 11 - .
  • X-1B Flight 20 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 20. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 10. Aborted after launch, indication of open landing-gear door. Propellants jettisoned, completed as a glide flight..

1957 July 19 - .
  • X-1B Flight 21 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 21. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 11. Mach 1.65 at 18,300 m. Control pulses, sideslips, and 2 g wind-up turn..

1957 July 29 - .
  • X-1B Flight 22 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 22. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 12. Enlarged wing tips installed to simulate wing tips to be used with reaction controls. Mach 1.55 at 18,300 m..

1957 August 8 - .
  • X-1B Flight 23 - . Crew: McKay. Payload: X-1B flight 23. Nation: USA. Related Persons: McKay. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 13. Stability and control investigation. Mach 1.5 at 18300 m, accelerated maneuvers, control pulses, and pull-ups..

1957 August 15 - .
  • X-1B Flight 24 - . Crew: Armstrong. Payload: X-1B flight 24. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 14. Pilot check. Nose landing gear failed on landing, minor damage..

1957 November 27 - .
  • X-1B Flight 25 - . Crew: Armstrong. Payload: X-1B flight 25. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 15. First reaction-control flight..

1958 January 16 - .
  • X-1B Flight 26 - . Crew: Armstrong. Payload: X-1B flight 26. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 16. Low-altitude, low-mach reaction-control investigation..

1958 January 23 - .
  • X-1B Flight 27 - . Crew: Armstrong. Payload: X-1B flight 27. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong. Class: Manned. Type: Manned rocketplane. Spacecraft: X-1B. Summary: NACA flight 17. Reaction-control investigation. Mach 1.5 at 16775 m. Last NACA flight..

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