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A Toast to the X-15A-3

The X-15A-3 was flown in 65 of the 199 flights of the X-15 program.  This aircraft in particular set the longest flight (748.7 seconds, by pilot Neil Armstrong), farthest flight (299.8 miles, by pilot Bill Dana), and the highest attitude (354,200 feet (unofficial) by pilot Joseph Walker) records for the entire X-15 program.

However, this aircraft is best-known for it's tragic role in the only fatal accident of the X-15.  On the program's 191st flight, Air Force pilot Major Michael Adams, returning from his astronaut-status qualifying flight, entered into a spin at 230,000 feet.  The pilot lost control of the aircraft and was incapacitated, disabling his ability to eject.  Descending at a speed of 160,000 per minute, the aircraft broken apart, destroying it and killing the pilot. 

 

Ingredient

Meaning

Amount

Johnnie Walker Black Label Whisky

The X-15, being constructed of the highly-heat resistant material, Inconel-X, was primarily black in color.

1 oz.

Skyy Vodka

The X-15A-3 set most of the records of the X-15 program.

1/2 oz.

Triple Sec

The X-15A-3 was the third aircraft of the X-15 program.

3/4 oz.

Sweet & Sour mix

The event went from a sweet occasion to a sour event.   The pilot achieved astronaut status, but died within minutes of his accomplishment.

Splash

7-up

The fatal crash was the pilot's 7th flight in the X-15.

Splash

Mix well... Serve over ice...  Enjoy responsibly.  Remember, don't drink and fly.

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This page last updated Wednesday, July 01, 2015

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