Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Why the Interest in a Canceled 50 Year Old Tech. Boost Glide.... The Bell x-20 Dyna-Soar

How many of you have ever heard of  the Boeing X-20 Dyna-Soar?  How about "boost-glide"? Not ringing to many bells or prompting too many memories huh?

Well this is a subject that was put to me today which was look up boost glide and as close as I could come was a long canceled project that involved Boeing and a some what shuttle looking lifting body called the  X-20 Dyna-Soar. (Check it out HERE)  Though it never flew, it did however have some impressive  performance goals, one of which was the ability to be anywhere on the Earth's surface in an hour.  The X-20 could attain these hyper velocities by being boosted by a rocket and then gliding at many times the speed of sound to its target.  As you can see  Boost  Glide. 

But this project was canceled more than 50 years ago after sucking up 660 million (that's about 5 billion in today's dollars) Why get excited about that?   According to this 2011 Space News Article
  • Currently, the Department of Defense has no plans to replace nuclear weapons on ICBMs or submarine-launched ballistic missiles with conventional weapons that fly ballistic trajectories,
Now consider that in 2011 there seemed to be no interest in boost glide weapons and technology when in fact the former Bush administration seems to have been VERY interested.   Check out this NPR audio file HERE

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