- The SR-71 has been given several nicknames, including Blackbird and Habu. The SR-71 served with the U.S. Air Force from 1964 to 1998.
2. SR-71s first arrived at the 9th SRW’s Operating Location (OL-8) at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa on 8 March 1968. These deployments were code named “Glowing Heat”, while the program as a whole was code named “Senior Crown”. Reconnaissance missions over North Vietnam were code named “Giant Scale”
3. A total of 32 aircraft were built; 12 were lost in accidents and none lost to enemy action.Considering all accident , Only one crew member, Jim Zwayer, a Lockheed flight-test reconnaissance and navigation systems specialist, was killed in a flight accident. The rest of the crew members ejected safely or evacuated their aircraft on the ground.
4. Finished aircraft were painted a dark blue, almost black, to increase the emission of internal heat and to act as camouflage against the night sky. The dark color led to the aircraft’s nickname “Blackbird”. The outer windscreen of the cockpit was made of quartz and was fused ultrasonically to the titanium frame. The temperature of the exterior of the windscreen reached 600 °F (316 °C) during a mission.
5. It has held the world record for the fastest air-breathing manned aircraft since 1976; this record was previously held by the related Lockheed YF-12. During aerial reconnaissance missions, the SR-71 operated at high speeds and altitudes to allow it to outrace threats. If a surface-to-air missile launch was detected, the standard evasive action was simply to accelerate and outfly the missile.
6. The red stripes on some SR-71s were to prevent maintenance workers from damaging the skin. Near the center of the fuselage, the curved skin was thin and delicate, with no support from the structural ribs, which were spaced several feet apart.
7. The Blackbird’s tires, manufactured by B.F. Goodrich, contained aluminum and were filled with nitrogen.
8. The air inlets allowed the SR-71 to cruise at over Mach 3.2 while keeping airflow into the engines at the initial subsonic speeds. Mach 3.2 was the design point for the aircraft, its most efficient speed. At the front of each inlet, a pointed, movable cone called a “spike” (Inlet cone) was locked in its full forward position on the ground and during subsonic flight.
9. The SR-71 was powered by two Pratt & Whitney J58 (company designation JT11D-20) axial-flow turbo-jet engines. The J58 was a considerable innovation of the era, capable of producing a static thrust of 32,500 lbf (145 kN)
10. Life support SR-71 pilot in full flight suit Flying at 80,000 ft (24,000 m) meant that crews could not use standard masks, which could not provide enough oxygen above 43,000 ft (13,000 m).an emergency ejection at Mach 3.2 would subject crews to temperatures of about 450 °F (230 °C) thus, during a high altitude ejection scenario, an onboard oxygen supply would keep the suit pressurized during the descent
- Crew: 2: Pilot and Reconnaissance Systems Officer (RSO)
- Payload: 3,500 lb (1,600 kg) of sensors
- Length: 107 ft 5 in (32.74 m)
- Wingspan: 55 ft 7 in (16.94 m)
- Height: 18 ft 6 in (5.64 m)
- Wing area: 1,800 ft2 (170 m2)
- Empty weight: 67,500 lb (30,600 kg)
- Loaded weight: 152,000 lb (69,000 kg)
- Max. takeoff weight: 172,000 lb (78,000 kg)
- Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney J58-1 continuous-bleed afterburning turbojets, 34,000 lbf (151 kN) each
- Maximum speed: Mach 3.3[N 5] (2,200+ mph, 3,540+ km/h, 1,910+ knots) at 80,000 ft (24,000 m)
- Range: 2,900 nmi (5,400 km)
- Ferry range: 3,200 nmi (5,925 km)
- Service ceiling: 85,000 ft (25,900 m)
- Rate of climb: 11820 ft/m (60 m/s)
- Wing loading: 84 lb/ft² (410 kg/m²)
- Thrust/weight: 0.44
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