An overview of the high-speed flight demonstration project

Wataru Sarae, Takeshi Nishizawa, Masakazu Sagisaka, Toshio Akimoto, Yoshikazu Miyazawa, Masaaki Yanagihara, Stéphanie Venel, Sylvain Guedron, Jean Claude Cretenet

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


An overview of flight experiments of the high-speed flight demonstration (HSFD) project is presented. The project consists of two phases: Phases I and II. The Phase I flight experiment was conducted in Christmas Island, Republic of Kiribati, from October to December 2002. Through three flights, we have demonstrated the vehicle's ability to fly a steep approach path (up to 25°), which is characteristic of return flights of winged reentry vehicles, and have accumulated autonomous flight technologies needed for unmanned vehicles including take-off and landing. A flight experiment of Phase II was conducted at Esrange test site near Kiruna in Sweden from June to July 2003 in collaboration with Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales of France (CNES). Using the flight data, the vehicle's aerodynamic characteristics at a constant Mach number (0.8) over a wide range of angles of attack were estimated, and fully autonomous flight control technologies were demonstrated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-235
Number of pages11
JournalSpace Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering


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