Aviation Week reports on upcoming tests of Europe’s LEA hypersonic program:
Full-scale wind tunnel tests of the LEA, the European hypersonic technology demonstrator vehicle, are poised to get under way in France, setting the stage for the buildup to flight tests in Russia….
…program officials confirm that it is ready for testing under Mach 6 flight conditions in the specially modified S4 wind tunnel in the French Alpine city of Modane.
The LEA hypersonic test vehicle is in development by MBDA and the French research agency Onera, and is scheduled to be air-dropped from a Russian Tupolev Tu-22M3 “Backfire-C” supersonic bomber.
Laurent Serre, program manager for LEA flight test at Onera, says the concept will be “validated by flight tests at Mach 4 to Mach 8. Flight tests are scheduled in 2014 and 2015, and preparations are under way for full-scale free jet tests at Mach 6 in the S4 blowdown wind tunnel.”
Read the full story.