X15 Rocket Ejection Test

February 29, 12

X15 rocket sled test launchFebruary 18, 1959.
Edwards Air Force Base, CA

Tests for the X15 rocket based ejection seat. These images taken during tests of a cockpit model for the X15, the plane designed to take man into space.

Upper left, the cockpit model starts test sled ride to prove automatic seat ejection design.

Upper right, canopy flies off and the “pilot” is sent skyward on the rocket propelled seat while the canopy cover (upper right) flies clear.

Lower left, the “pilot” comes free from the seat and the parachute automatically opens. ¬†Lower right, parachute safely brings “pilot” to the ground.

When rockets attached to seats were a good idea, personified personal risk for public gain, and made conquest immediately visible.

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