Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Edwards AFB in Kern County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Rocket Engine NF-104A

Aerospace Jet Trainer

 
 
NF-104A Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, September 20, 2019
1. NF-104A Marker
Inscription.  
First flight — June, 1963.
Last flight — December, 1971.

On 6 December 1963, major Robert W. Smith set an unofficial world altitude record of 120,800 feet from a ground takeoff.

Plaque presented by: Class 72B — USAF Test Pilot School.
 
Erected 1972 by USAF Test Pilot School.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Air & SpaceEducation. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1963.
 
Location. 34° 55.013′ N, 117° 54.039′ W. Marker is in Edwards AFB, California, in Kern County. Marker is on Wolfe Avenue west of Muroc Drive, on the left when traveling west. Located in front of USAF Test Pilot School. Edwards AFB is not open to the public. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 220 Wolfe Ave, Edwards CA 93524, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. F-86F (approx. half a mile away); Leaps in Technology (approx. half a mile away); F-16B (approx. half a mile away); Bell XP-59A Jet Aircraft (approx. half a mile away); Jackie Cochran (approx. 0.6 miles away); Sound Barrier Cracked (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Medal of Honor (approx. 0.8 miles away); F-111A - "Aardvark" (approx. 1.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Edwards AFB.
 
Regarding Rocket Engine NF-104A.
NF-104A Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, September 20, 2019
2. NF-104A Marker
The marker is at the base of the pedestal.
Click or scan to see
this page online
This Lockheed NF-104A was the first of three astronaut training vehicles built from existing F-104A aircraft. The modifications included the small rocket engine, and a reaction-control system for flight in the stratosphere. One of the aircraft was destroyed when it went out of control while being flown by Chuck Yeager, who was commander of the Test Pilot School. The accident was depicted in the movie and book The Right Stuff, written by Tom Wolfe.
 
NF-104A Jet Trainer image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, September 20, 2019
3. NF-104A Jet Trainer
During the 75th anniversary of USAF Test Pilot School.
NF-104A Jet Trainer image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, September 20, 2019
4. NF-104A Jet Trainer
NF-104A Jet Trainer image. Click for full size.
By Craig Baker, September 20, 2019
5. NF-104A Jet Trainer
The rocket engine is above the jet engine exhaust.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 23, 2019. It was originally submitted on September 21, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. This page has been viewed 69 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on September 21, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.

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May. 10, 2021