Pentagon's technological innovators are set to test an unmanned aircraft known as Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2, or HTV-2, capable of reaching speeds of up to 13,000 miles per hour, or about 3.6 miles per second. The test is scheduled for Thursday morning from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The launch of the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2, or HTV-2, was scheduled for Wednesday but was pushed back by a day because of bad weather, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) says, the surface temperatures on the Falcon are expected to reach in excess of 3,500 degrees Fahrenheit, hot enough to melt steel. It is supposed to fly 22 times faster than a commercial airliner, according to Washingtonpost report.
The report said, the ultimate goal behind developing this technology is to allow the U.S. military to respond to threats anywhere in the world within an hour - a capability that U.S. officials have said is necessary to deter against terrorist networks and other adversaries.
The aircraft has been developed by the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency for military use, and is fast enough to carry passengers from London to Sydney in less than 60 minutes, said digitaltrends.com.
The experimental aircraft is scheduled to take off, and an Air Force Minotaur IV rocket will take HTV-2 to the edge of the atmosphere of Earth but won't enter space with the aircraft.
After HTV-2 separates from the rocket, it will fly over the Pacific Ocean at speeds of up to Mach 20. That's
The event can be followed on the Pentagon's Twitter feed.
The U.S. military is interested in developing hypersonic aircraft for its potential ability to reach any part of the world in less than an hour.