Presented is a model Northrup X-4 Bantam plane signed by Chuck Yeager. Yeager was one of the few selected Air Force pilots to test the X-4 in 1950.
During World War II, engineers in the US and UK studied semi-tailless aircraft. After the war, the Army Air Forces signed a contract with the Northrop Aircraft Company on June 11, 1946, to build two X-4s. The goal was to test if a semi-tailless configuration could perform at transonic (near-supersonic) speeds better than conventional aircraft.
The resulting aircraft was very compact, only large enough to hold two J30 jet engines, a pilot, instrumentation, and a 45-minute fuel supply. For control without horizontal tail surfaces, the X-4 used combined elevator and aileron control surfaces (called elevons) for control in pitch and roll attitudes. The aircraft also had split flaps, which doubled as speed brakes.
The NACA instrumented the second X-4 to conduct a short series of flights with Air Force pilots. These included Chuck Yeager, Pete Everest, Al Boyd, Richard Johnson, Fred Ascani, Arthur Murray and Jack Ridley. The flights were made in August and September of 1950.
Very good condition. Signature to wing in black permanent felt tip marker. Model rests on a black stand with descriptive plaque and gold lettering.
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