Chuck Yeager breaks the sound barrier -- again

Sixty-five years after his history making flight, the legendary test pilot takes to the skies to celebrate one of the seminal events in aviation history.

Chuck Yeager was 24 when he became the first human to break the speed of sound. And to celebrate the 65th anniversary of that history-making event, the 89-year-old former test pilot and now retired Air Force brigadier general did it again, flying in the rear seat of an F-15 that broke the sound barrier at 10:24 a.m. on Sunday.

Yeager, whose exploits were chronicled in the book (and film) "The Right Stuff," gained worldwide notoriety when his Bell X-1 -- a 30 foot, 11 inch plane with a 28-foot wingspan -- reached a speed of 700 miles per hour, Mach 1.06, at an altitude of 43,000 feet on October 14, 1947. With his flight, the era of supersonic aviation was born.

About the author

Charles Cooper was an executive editor at CNET News. He has covered technology and business for more than 25 years, working at CBSNews.com, the Associated Press, Computer & Software News, Computer Shopper, PC Week, and ZDNet.

 

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