eR-2 and U-2 Over Golden Gate
NASA eR-2 and U-2 in flight over the Golden Gate Bridge.
The eR-2 is NASA's "civilian" version of the U-2. "eR" stands for "earth Resource". NASA's eR-2s have tail numbers 806 and 809 (previously 706 and 709). NASA began using the U-2 in 1971 to collect science data. It replaced the U-2s with eR-2s in 1981 and 1989. The aircraft were based at the NASA Ames Research Center until 1997 when they moved to NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center. The aircraft are platforms for a variety of high-altitude science missions flown all over the world. They are also used for earth science and atmospheric sensor research and development, satellite calibration and data validation. The eR-2s can carry 2,600 pounds of experiments in a nose bay, the main equipment bay behind the cockpit, two wing-mounted superpods and small underbody and trailing edges. Most eR-2 missions last about six hours with ranges of about 2,200 nautical miles at altitudes above 65,000 feet. The aircraft is 63 feet long, with a wingspan of 104 feet. The top of the vertical tail is 16 feet above ground when the aircraft is on the bicycle-type landing gear. Cruising speeds are 410 knots, or 467 miles per hour, at altitude. A single General electric F-118 turbofan engine rated at 17,000 pounds thrust powers the eR-2. For more information see the eR-2 Fact Sheet.
Photo Identification: AC88-0755-6, 1988, eric James
(Date of this photo is suspect.
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