Valkyrie: North American's Mach 3 Superbomber
The Valkyrie is one of the icons of modern aviation, which is curious considering only two were built and they flew just 164 times. Like the Maiden it was named for, the Valkyrie awed those around it. Beautiful in form, and almost unbelievable in function, the B-70 would have been the ultimate incarnation of Curtis LeMay's vision of a strategic bomber. The half-million pound aircraft was capable of flying over 2,000 miles per hour in excess of 80,000 feet, and doing it for hours at a time. Fantastic as the Valkyrie appeared, it was not to be. The political and fiscal climate that existed during the 1960s strangled - then killed - the aircraft almost before it was born. This is the story of the largest Mach 3 aircraft ever flown - the North American Aviation XB-70A Valkyrie. Dennis R. Jenkins and Tony R. Landis have conducted extensive research in military, NASA, and company archives to find previously uncovered aspects of this fascinating program. Included are descriptions of the proposed bombing and navigation systems, defensive armament, electronic countermeasures, and early attempts at stealth technology. Accompanied by over 250 photos and dozens of illustrations, this in-depth history covers the entire B-70 program, not just the two aircraft that ultimately flew.
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