Flights of fancy at 8600km/h
Until this week, such “blink-of-an-eye” travel times were the realm of science-fiction writers but – thanks to Australian and American defence scientists – “hypersonic” travel for the masses has taken a big step forward.
At the remote Woomera Test Range in the South Australian desert this month, a metre-long hypersonic air vehicle was successfully test-flown at more than seven times the speed of sound.
That is an incredible 8600km/h.
The Defence Science and Technology Organisation and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory teamed up to blast the test aircraft 300km into space and then send it hurtling back to Earth at blistering speed under controlled flight.
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