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During re-entry from 207,000 feet in X-15-3 (56-6672), Neil Armstrong inadvertently established a positive angle of attack during pull-out, and overshot Edwards AFB, heading south at Mach 3 and 100,000 feet altitude.
April 20, 1962

During re-entry from 207,000 feet in X-15-3 (56-6672), Neil Armstrong inadvertently established a positive angle of attack during pull-out, and overshot Edwards AFB, heading south at Mach 3 and 100,000 feet altitude. He finally managed to turn back while over the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, and had just enough energy to land on the south end of Rogers Dry Lake at Edwards. In the debriefing, someone asked how much clearance the X-15 had from the Joshua trees on the edge of the lakebed. "Oh, at least 100 feet...on either side," said the chase pilot.

NASA Photo
E60-6286

 

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