Crossfield Tested the Sky's -- and Body's -- Limits
The legendary test pilot, Scott Crossfield, has died at age 84. The single-engine Cessna he was flying crashed Wednesday during a flight from Alabama to Virginia.
Crossfield's fame as a test pilot was surpassed only by that of Chuck Yeager.
He was the first person to fly at more than twice the speed of sound, Mach 2. He reached 1,300 mph in 1953.
In 1960, Crossfield reached Mach 2.97. That flight took place in an X-15 rocket plane that was launched from a B-52. In that flight, he reached an altitude of 81,000 feet.
Ken Hyde worked with Scott Crossfield on a much lower and slower craft, the replica of the Wright Brothers' plane that was built for the 100th anniversary of their flight at Kitty Hawk. Hyde is president of the Wright Experience in Warrenton, Va.
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