Blooming roses at the Armstrong Flight Research Center (AFRC) highlight the Bell X-IE aircraft mounted in front of the main building at the center. The X-1E was one of the first supersonic aircraft and was the last of the X-1 series of aircraft. It was last flown in November 1958 and now resides at the center. The aircraft was developed by NASA’s predecessor, the National Advisory Committee on Aeronautics.
AFRC, formerly known as the Dryden Flight Research Center, has a long history of aeronautical research. AFRC has developed and operates some of the most advanced aircraft in the world and is known for many aviation firsts, including critical support for the first crewed airplane to exceed the speed of sound and the first digital fly-by-wire aircraft, a critical component of commerical airplanes.
Image Credit: NASA/Dale McCoy Armstrong