X-20 Replica Installed in Armstrong Hall

January 14, 2014  

X-20 Replica

A replica of the X-20 hypersonic space plane was installed in the atrium of the Neil Armstrong Hall of Engineering at Purdue on Jan. 10. The replica is a gift to the College of Engineering from Boeing Corp., which developed the plane. The X-20 was first unveiled in 1962 and is considered a forerunner of the space shuttle. Among those named as X-20 pilots was Armstrong, a 1955 Purdue graduate and the first man to walk on the moon. Before his death, Armstrong endorsed having the X-20 replica at Purdue in the building named in his honor. "Although it never flew, there is a good deal of engineering history, and it inevitably contributed to the shuttle," he said. "Plus, it is an interesting-looking bird." The X-20 was designed to be launched from a Titan II or Titan III rocket into a low-earth orbit of 150-300 miles with a maximum speed of 17,500 miles an hour.

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