The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) continues to assemble the X-59 QueSST supersonic aircraft. Last fall he got the engine, and this week became knownthat the first flight will take place before the end of 2023. During testing, the X-59 will be chased by two aircraft.
What is known
Back in 2021, NASA reported that the F-15 Eagle fighter jet would chase the X-59 to measure and visualize the sound waves produced by the experimental aircraft at supersonic speeds. To do this, it was equipped with a tool called the Airborne Location Integrating Geospatial Navigation System (ALIGNS). The antenna will help the fighter pilot coordinate his movements while behind the target.
As it turned out, one F-15 is not enough to collect data. The X-59 will be raced not only by the Eagle, but also by the Super Hornet. NASA will use the F/A-18D as a platform for videographers and photographers to try to document the supersonic flight.
The space agency received an F/A-18D from the US Marine Corps. Until 2021, it was based at the US Navy Patuxent River base in Maryland. All military equipment was removed.