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NASA Sets Coverage for X-59 Quiet Supersonic Aircraft Rollout

Artist’s concept of the X-59 quiet supersonic aircraft. NASA and Lockheed Martin Skunk Works will unveil the aircraft on Friday, Jan. 12.

Editor’s Note: This advisory was revised Thursday, Jan. 11, to include a new contact for reporters wishing to participate in the media teleconference on Friday, Jan. 12, and to add the time of the teleconference.

NASA will provide live coverage as it reveals its X-59 aircraft at 4 p.m. EST on Friday, Jan. 12, as part of the agency’s Quesst mission to make commercial supersonic flight possible.

For the first time, the public will see the painted aircraft, which will be unveiled during a ceremony hosted by prime contractor Lockheed Martin Skunk Works in Palmdale, California.

The ceremony and rollout of the aircraft will stream live on the NASA+ streaming service. Coverage also will air on NASA Television, the NASA app, YouTube, and on the agency’s website. Learn how to stream NASA TV through a variety of platforms, including social media.

Speakers at the event include:

  • NASA Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy
  • NASA Associate Administrator James Free
  • Bob Pearce, associate administrator, Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters in Washington
  • John Clark, vice president and general manager, Skunk Works
  • Greg Ulmer, executive vice president of aeronautics, Lockheed Martin

Members of the media with questions about attending the event should contact Skunk Works. In addition to the on-site events, NASA will host a teleconference for members of the media at 6:30 p.m. EST on Friday, after the ceremony. Reporters can contact to RSVP.

Members of the public can sign up to get their own virtual boarding pass for the X-59’s first flight. Via NASA’s Flight Log experience, participants’ names will be digitized and downloaded onto a storage device that will be carried personally by the X-59 pilot. Participants will also receive a printable boarding pass with their names, and the flight will be entered into their logbooks.

NASA’s X-59 is a one-of-a-kind experimental aircraft that will demonstrate the ability to fly supersonic while generating a gentle “sonic thump” rather than the normally loud sonic boom.

Once the X-59 completes assembly and testing, NASA’s Quesst team will select several U.S. communities to fly the aircraft and gather data on how people perceive the sound it produces. The agency will provide that data to U.S. and international regulators to potentially adjust current rules that prohibit commercial supersonic flight over land.

For more information about Quesst, visit:


Rob Margetta
Headquarters, Washington

Sasha Ellis
Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia

Candis Roussel
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Palmdale, California
661- 264-8592