Pentagon releases results of 13,000-mph test flight over Pacific

An artist's rendering of the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2. (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency / April 20, 2012)

By W.J. Hennigan (for The Los Angeles Times)April 20, 2012
The results are in from last summer’s attempt to test new technology that would provide the Pentagon with a lightning-fast vehicle, capable of delivering a military strike anywhere in the world in less than an hour.In August the Pentagon’s research arm, known as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, carried out a test flight of an experimental aircraft capable of traveling at 20 times the speed of sound.

The arrowhead-shaped unmanned aircraft, dubbed Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2, blasted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base, northwest of Santa Barbara, into the upper reaches of the Earth’s atmosphere aboard an eight-story Minotaur IV rocket made by Orbital Sciences Corp. Continue reading

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