Aviation - Avions NASA-Prototypes
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Rogers Smith, a NASA research pilot, is seen here at the cockpit of the X-29 forward-swept-wing technology demonstrator at NASA's Ames-Dryden Flight Research Facility (later the Dryden Flight Research Center), Edwards, California, in 1988. The X-29 explored the use of advanced composites in aircraft construction; variable camber wing surfaces; the unique forward-swept-wing and its thin supercritical airfoil; strake flaps; and a computerized fly-by-wire flight control system that overcame the aircraft's instability. Grumman Aircraft Corporation built two X-29s. They were flight tested at Dryden from 1984 to 1992 in a joint NASA, DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and U.S. Air Force program.