With the third X-51A WaveRider failing to reach hypersonic speed due to a fin failure last August, it seemed the United States Air Force would possibly forgo the fourth (and final) run. On the morning of May 1st, however, that last X-51A got its chance to soar, successfully reaching mach 5.1 during a record 370-second flight. According to the Wright…
Category : Misc
With the third X-51A WaveRider failing to reach hypersonic speed due to a fin failure last August, it seemed the United States Air Force would possibly forgo the fourth (and final) run. On the morning of May 1st, however, that last X-51A got its chance to soar, successfully reaching Mach 5.1 during a record 370-second flight. According to the Wright Patterson Air Force base, the aircraft’s rocket booster helped it hit Mach 4.8 about 26 seconds after being released from a B-2H at 50K feet, at which point its air-fed scramjet brought it to 60,000 feet while achieving hypersonic flight. The USAF notes that “it was the longest of the four X-51A test flights [230 nautical miles] and the longest air-breathing hypersonic flight” — surely taking some of the sting out of the $300 million program’s previous shortcomings. Past flights aimed to hit Mach six, with the first and second tests only sustaining Mach five.
The aircraft made destructive splashdown landing into the Pacific “as planned,” but data from the whole flight was recorded. The USAF isn’t planning a followup to the X-51A anytime soon, though the program will likely serve as a reference for future designs. You can dig into the official rundown at the link below.
Filed under: Misc, Transportation
Your smartphone and / or tablet is just begging for an update. From time to time, these mobile devices are blessed with maintenance refreshes, bug fixes, custom ROMs and anything in between, and so many of them are floating around that it’s easy for a sizable chunk to get lost in the mix. To make sure they don’t escape without notice, we’ve gathered every possible update, hack, and other miscellaneous tomfoolery we could find during the last week and crammed them into one convenient roundup. If you find something available for your device, please give us a shout at tips at engadget dawt com and let us know. Enjoy!
Filed under: Cellphones, Software, Mobile
Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week’s most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us — it’s the Week in Green.
The start of May saw an abundance of groundbreaking stories about flora and fauna — first, there was the heartwarming story of Naki’o, the first dog to be fitted with four prosthetic limbs after losing his legs to frostbite. Then we were surprised and slightly disturbed to learn that scientists in Uruguay used genetic engineering to create glowing sheep with genes from the Aequorea victoria jellyfish. In other illuminating news, a team of bioengineers in San Francisco is using genes from fireflies to create plants that glow. And the Institute of Space Systems in Germany announced plans to use Heliospectra’s new LED lighting systems to conduct research into growing vegetables in outer space.
Filed under: Misc, Science
More than a few enthusiasts were gutted when HP exited webOS hardware before the Touchpad Go could even have the distinction of a press release. WebOS Ports’ Simon Busch can’t resurrect HP’s miniature tablet plans, but he can give us an inkling of what we missed with his new alpha port of Open webOS