X-3 preflight calibration, test flight and landing circa 1954. The slender, jet-powered X-3, built by Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach, California, tested such new materials as titanium and collected data on stability and control, pressure distribution, and flight loads.
What Does NASA Do?
NASA's mission is to pioneer the future in space exploration, scientific discovery and aeronautics research.
To do that, thousands of people have been working around the world -- and off of it -- for almost 50 years, trying to answer some basic questions. What's out there in space? How do we get there? What will we find? What can we learn there, or learn just by trying to get there, that will make life better here on Earth?