Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Hypersonic craft gets second test off Central Coast

Stratolaunch conducted a test flight of its hypersonic Talon A craft on Saturday.

Stratolaunch takes Talon A craft for a four hour ride, but it wasn't actually launched.

An experimental aircraft designed to fly at hypersonic speeds has undergone its second major test on the Central Coast.

Stratolaunch used its massive Roc launch aircraft to carry the Talon A hypersonic craft into the air for a more than four hour flight Saturday. The unmanned Talon A is designed to be lifted into the air by the giant jet plane. It then is launched from its mount under the wing of the jumbo jet.

The weekend flight was designed to check systems. The hypersonic test aircraft was loaded with fuel, but wasn’t actually launched. Engineers also used the test to check the craft’s communications connections with ground control.

The flight took place on a test range off of Vandenberg Space Force Base. When operational, the Talon A craft will be used for hypersonic testing. Flights will potentially exceed five times the speed of sound.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.