Build milestones

Major assembly events mark key completed milestones along the path to supersonic flight. Each complete initiative serves to mitigate risk and maximize overall safety of the XB-1 program.

Timeline

Nose landing gear and cockpit bond
This twenty hour bond event joined the nose landing gear bay and cockpit together, sealing the structure into the right hand fuselage skin.
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12.2019
Nose landing gear and cockpit bond
Wing closeout
The wing structure transformed from a skeleton frame to a completely closed unit, during this eight-hour bond event.
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01.2020
Wing closeout
First flight of second-generation simulator
Assembly of the second-generation simulator enabled teams to finalize aircraft flight control design and enhance the pilot training program.
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02.2020
First flight of second-generation simulator
Lefthand fuselage skin install
As the single largest-scale bond event, the left hand skin install completely closed the fuselage structure and set the final shape of the aircraft.
03.2020
Lefthand fuselage skin install
Wing testing
A simulation of the most extreme flight conditions validated the wing design and approved the structure safe for flight.
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03.2020
Wing testing
Forward fuselage closeout
The final significant bonding operation, closing of the forward fuselage, is complete.
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06.2020
Forward fuselage closeout
Nose landing gear passed drop tests
The nose landing gear passed a series of drop tests at incrementally higher energy limits, validating this component’s performance up to an extreme 184 kts (212 mph) landing.
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07.2020
Nose landing gear passed drop tests
Aft fuselage install
The fully titanium aft is joined to the forward fuselage.
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08.2020
Aft fuselage install
Engines and inlets installed
Three J85-15 engines and supersonic inlets are installed to the aft fuselage.
08.2020
Engines and inlets installed
Weight on wheels
XB-1 stands on its own for the first time, with the full weight of the aircraft on wheels.
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09.2020
Weight on wheels
Rollout
XB-1 is fully assembled and revealed to the world for the first time.
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10.2020
Rollout
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