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Separation Anxiety

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While the XB-70 served an important role as a Cold War deterrent with the US Air Force, a few of the craft were employed by NASA and then the USAA for research operations. One of these vehicles was modified to serve as the booster stage for Lockheed's Orion III space plane in its first atmospheric and sub orbital test flights until the production fly-back booster was completed and ready for tests of the complete Orion III configuration.

This image, from a chase plane in 1993, shows the sixth test flight and fourth test separation of the Orion III prototype.

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Orion model by MattC. 2D/3D composite image created in DAZ Studio and Photoshop.
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