Aviation - Avions NASA-Prototypes
(La description de cette image n'existe qu'en anglais)
Two BQM-34 Firebee II drones were modified with supercritical airfoils, called the Aeroelastic Research Wing (ARW), for the Drones for Aerodynamic and Structural Testing (DAST) program, which ran from 1977 to 1983. In this view of DAST-1 (Serial # 72-1557), taken on June 12, 1980, severe wingtip flutter is visible. Moments later, the right wing failed catastrophically and the vehicle crashed near Cuddeback Dry Lake. Before the drone was lost, it had made two captive and two free flights. Its first free flight, on October 2, 1979, was cut short by an uplink receiver failure. The drone was caught in midair by an HH-3 helicopter. The second free flight, on March 12, 1980, was successful, ending in a midair recovery. The third free flight, made on June 12, was to expand the flutter envelope. All of these missions launched from the NASA B-52.