NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION EDWARDS AFB CA DRYDEN FLIGHT RESEARCH CENTER
A series of subsonic maneuvers simulating typical off-the-pad escape and landing procedures for a vertically launched hypersonic-glider configuration was flown using a delta-wing airplane having a peak effective lift-drag ratio of 4.7. None of the required maneuvers posed any particularly difficult or taxing situations for the pilots. Circular, overhead landing patterns flown at 240 knots indicated airspeed were relatively easy to perform and resulted in touchdown longitudinal dispersions of less than 1,200 feet. A reduction in the pilots visibility from the cockpit did not noticeably impair his ability to navigate except when view of the area directly beneath the airplane was required. However, portions of the escape and landing maneuvers were adversely affected by the reduced visibility.