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X-59 assembly progresses despite pandemic challenges
Thursday, 29 October 2020
Lockheed Martin is assembling the experimental aircraft for NASA in anticipation of its first flight some time in mid-2022, and is now turning its attention to the cockpit space.

Technicians at Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Works factory in Palmdale, California have turned their attention to the cockpit section of NASA’s X-59 Quiet SuperSonic Technology research aircraft.

In this newly-released photograph the camera is looking toward the rear of the aircraft. The yellow-green metal are the wing’s internal structural ribs, while the gray metal in the foreground marks the cockpit’s interior. An ejection seat from a retired NASA T-38 training jet will eventually be installed in the cockpit along with the airplane’s avionics – including the eXternal Vision System.

Lockheed Martin is assembling the experimental aircraft for NASA in anticipation of its first flight some time in mid-2022. Designed to produce quiet sonic “thumps” when flying supersonic, the X-59 will be flown over select communities to measure public perception of the sound. Results will be given to regulators to use in determining new rules that could allow commercial faster-than-sound air travel over land.

Assembly of the X-59 is continuing during 2020 and is reported to be making good progress, despite challenges such as those imposed by the unexpected global pandemic.

Contact details from our directory:
NASA Langley Research Center Research/Consulting Services, Testing Services, Wind Tunnels
Lockheed Martin Skunk Works Airframer, Design Services, Research/Consulting Services, Technical/Eng/Scientific Studies
Related aircraft programs:
Lockheed Martin Skunk Works X-59 QueSST