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Title: XB-70A in flight Movie Number: XB-70A Movie Date: 1960s Keywords: XB-70 Format: 320x240 MPEG (2,721 KBytes)
Streaming: Description: Originally conceived as a supersonic bomber, the North American XB-70A Valkyrie instead became the world's largest experimental research aircraft, flying from September 21, 1964 until February 4, 1969. The movie is about 20 seconds in length and shows XB-70A Number 1 from several angles during engine run-up, taxi, takeoff and air-to-air during supersonic cruise. The in-flight view clearly shows two condensation patterns trailing behind the nose of the plane. These are vortex flows, originating from the tips of the canards.
One of the unique features of the Valkyries the variable outer wing panel. It was left undeflected at subsonic speeds to take advantage of the full wingspan and wing area to increase L/D and improve takeoff and landing performance.
At supersonic speeds, adequate cruise L/D can be developed with less wingspan, so the outer panels are folded down. Deflected, they reduce drag as the tips interact with the inlet shock wave in the lower surface flow field. Lowering the tips also reduces the area behind the airplane's center of gravity, which is important because as Mach number increases, the center of pressure move rearward, so less area aft of the cg reduces trim drag. The outer panels also provided more vertical surface to improve directional stability.
We would like to thank Marty Curry, Ted Huetter, and Robert Binkley
from NASA Dryden Flight Research Center , for providing the videos.
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Updated: March 12, 2004