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Lockheed SR-71A Blackbird

Photo ID 190229 by Chris Lofting. USA NASA Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, NASA832
The Lockheed SR-71 was an advanced, long-range, Mach 3 strategic reconnaissance aircraft developed from the Lockheed A-12 and YF-12A aircraft by the Lockheed Skunk Works as a Black project. The SR-71 was unofficially named the Blackbird, and called the Habu by its crews.
The airframe of the SR-71 is very unique. To withstand the friction-generated heat at Mach 3+, over 90 percent of the airframe is made of titanium composite. Also to withstand heat, the main gear tires have been impregnated with aluminum and are filled with nitrogen.
After the SR-71 takes off, it has a rendezvous with a KC-135Q tanker seven minutes later. The SR-71 takes off with a very light fuel load and after this refueling, the plane can fly up to 2,500 miles without refueling.
The SR-71 line was in service from 1964 to 1998, with 12 of the 32 aircraft being destroyed in accidents, though none were lost to enemy action.
  • Country of Origin: United States
  • First Flight: 1964
  • Initial Service Date: 1966
  • No. Built: 32
  • No. In Service: 0
  • No. of Hardpoints:
  • Crew: 2

Power:

2 Pratt & Whitney J58-1 continuous-bleed afterburning turbojets at 32,500 lbf

Weapons:

Optical/infrared imagery systems, side-looking airborne radar (SLAR), electronic intelligence (ELINT) gathering systems, defensive systems (for countering missile and airborne fighter threats) and recorders for SLAR, ELINT and maintenance data

Dimensions:

Length:107 ft. 5 in.
Wing Span:55 ft. 7 in.
Wing Area:1,800 sq.ft
Height:18 ft. 6 in.
Empty Weight:67,500 lbs
Max. Weight:172,000 lbs
Max. Payload:3,500 lbs

Performance:

Max. Speed:2,200+ mph
Cruise Speed:2,112 mph
Service Ceiling:85,000 ft.
Normal Range:2,900 nm
Max. Range:3,200 nm

Operators:

United States Air Force
NASA

Random great photos of the Lockheed SR-71A Blackbird:

Photo ID 157718 by Michael Baldock. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7980
Photo ID 68647 by Peter Boschert. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7971
Photo ID 30651 by Arie van Groen. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7979
Photo ID 139027 by Carl Brent. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7962
Photo ID 72068 by Peter Boschert. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7967
Photo ID 76159 by Rod Dermo. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7955
Photo ID 10047 by Michael Baldock. USA Air Force Lockheed SR 71A Blackbird, 61 7979
More photos »