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X-40A completes fourth NASA drop test
Posted: Mon, May 7, 2001, 9:36 AM ET (1336 GMT)
X-40A drop test The X-40A experimental vehicle completed the fourth in a series of NASA-run drop tests Saturday. The vehicle was dropped from a helicopter 4,625 meters above Edwards Air Force Base, California at 10:14 am EDT (1414 GMT) Saturday, landing safely on the lakebed below two minutes later. The X-40A performed a series of side-to-side maneuvers during the flight. The test was the fourth of up to seven that NASA has planned to test the flight characteristics of the vehicle, an 85-percent scale model of the X-37 prototype crew return vehicle. The X-40A was built by Boeing for the Air Force, which originally intended the vehicle to be a scale model of a proposed Space Maneuver Vehicle. The Air Force, which conducted one drop test of the X-40A in 1998, is loaning the vehicle to NASA for the current series of flights.
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