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The Daily Need

Photo: Rocket man

On this day in 1947, U.S. Air Force Captain Chuck Yeager became the first person to fly faster than the speed of sound aboard the experimental Bell X-1 rocket plane. The bullet-shaped plane, nicknamed "Glamorous Glennis" after Yeager's wife, was lifted by a B-29 aircraft to an altitude of 25,000 feet, then released through the bomb bay where it rocketed to 43,000 feet and reached 700 miles per hour (Mach 1.06 at that altitude). Days before the historic flight, Yeager broke two ribs when he fell from a horse, but kept the injury quiet to avoid being pulled from the mission. Photo: U.S. Air Force

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