Warplanes: April 25, 2001

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The sixteen Concorde supersonic airliners have logged more time at supersonic (faster than sound) speed than all military aircraft ever in service. You typical military aircraft spends, at most, a few percent of its flight hours at supersonic speed. Few ever hit their rated top speed (usually Mach 2 or thereabouts.) Even at that, the rated top speed is usually only achieved if the aircraft is carrying no weapons and not much fuel. And after such a sprint, the engines have to be carefully checked. 

 


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