Faster Than a Speeding Bullet



Faster Than a Speeding Bullet. 'The First low level penetration by a manned bomber at Guadalupe Pass, -Sept 18, 1959. By: Mike Machat, Signed By: Beryl A Erickson Beryl Erickson was born to fly. Over a long and distinguished career as a test pilot for the company that would grow to become General Dynamics, Erickson was instrumental in the development of a number of World War II and Cold War era planes, including the first intercontinental bomber and the first bomber that could fly at twice the speed of sound. The Convair B-58 Hustler was the first operational supersonic jet bomber capable of Mach 2 flight.The aircraft was designed by Convair engineer Robert H. Widmer and developed for the United States Air Force for service in the Strategic Air Command (SAC) during the 1960s.It used a delta wing, which was also employed by Convair fighters such as the F-102, with four General Electric J79 engines in pods under the wing. It carried a nuclear weapon and fuel in a large pod under the fuselage rather than in an internal bomb bay. Replacing the Boeing B-47 Stratojet medium bomber, it was originally intended to fly at high altitudes and supersonic speeds to avoid Soviet fighters. The B-58 received a great deal of notoriety due to its sonic boom, which was often heard by the public as it passed overhead in supersonic flight.

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