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Boeing x-20 dyna-soar

The meaning of «boeing x-20 dyna-soar»

The Boeing X-20 Dyna-Soar ("Dynamic Soarer") was a United States Air Force (USAF) program to develop a spaceplane that could be used for a variety of military missions, including aerial reconnaissance, bombing, space rescue, satellite maintenance, and as a space interceptor to sabotage enemy satellites.[1] The program ran from October 24, 1957 to December 10, 1963, cost US$660 million ($5.51 billion in current dollars[2]), and was cancelled just after spacecraft construction had begun.

Other spacecraft under development at the time, such as Mercury or Vostok, were space capsules with ballistic re-entry profiles that ended in a landing under a parachute. Dyna-Soar was more like an aircraft. It could travel to distant targets at the speed of an intercontinental ballistic missile, was designed to glide to Earth like an aircraft under control of a pilot, and could land at an airfield. Dyna-Soar could also reach Earth orbit, like conventional, manned space capsules.[3]

These characteristics made Dyna-Soar a far more advanced concept than other human spaceflight missions of the period. Research into a spaceplane was realized much later in other reusable spacecraft such as the 1981–2011 Space Shuttle[4][5] and the more recent Boeing X-40 and X-37B spacecraft.

The concept underlying the X-20 was developed in Germany during World War II by Eugen Sänger and Irene Bredt as part of the 1941 Silbervogel proposal. This was a design for a rocket-powered bomber able to attack New York City from bases in Germany and then fly on for landing somewhere in the Pacific Ocean held by the Empire of Japan. The idea would be to use the vehicle's wings to generate lift and pull up into a new ballistic trajectory, exiting the atmosphere again and giving the vehicle time to cool off between the skips.[6] After the war, it was demonstrated that the heating load during the skips was much higher than initially calculated, and would have melted the spacecraft.[7]

Following the war, many German scientists were taken to the United States by the Office of Strategic Services's Operation Paperclip, bringing with them detailed knowledge of the Silbervogel project.[8] Among them, Walter Dornberger and Krafft Ehricke moved to Bell Aircraft, where, in 1952, they proposed what was essentially a vertical launch version of Silbervogel known as Bomi.[9][10]

These studies all proposed various rocket-powered vehicles that could travel vast distances by gliding after being boosted to high speed and altitude by a rocket stage.[11] The rocket booster would place the vehicle onto a suborbital, but exoatmospheric, trajectory, resulting in a brief spaceflight followed by re-entry into the atmosphere. Instead of a full re-entry and landing, the vehicle would use the lift from its wings to redirect its glide angle upward, trading horizontal velocity for vertical velocity. In this way, the vehicle would be "bounced" back into space again. This skip-glide[12] method would repeat until the speed was low enough that the pilot of the vehicle would need to pick a landing spot and glide the vehicle to a landing. This use of hypersonic atmospheric lift meant that the vehicle could greatly extend its range over a ballistic trajectory using the same rocket booster.[11]

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