The Lockheed F-104 Starfighter first flew in 1954. Starfighters then broke the world altitude record in May 1958 and the world air-speed record nine days later. It was the first aircraft to hold both records simultaneously. Many of the Starfighter's records stand today. With a powerful XJ79 engine and futuristic design by famed Lockheed engineer Clarence "Kelly" Johnson and his team, a YF-104A passed Mach 2 in 1956. The F-104 was born from combat against Communist MiG-15 jet aircraft during the Korean War. Known as a "missile with a man in it" and "an engine with wings," Starfighters trained astronauts such as Chuck Yeager on the edge of space, fought over Vietnam, and were lethal Cold War interceptors capable of firing air-to-air nuclear missiles. During its 50-year career, it was used by no less than 15 nations from Jordan to Taiwan. Italy finally retired its fleet in 2005. It is poised to be reborn as a civilian satellite-launcher in 2018. Through more than 160 vintage photos--many in original color--numerous line drawings, and new color profiles, this new volume chronicles the remarkable military career of this aircraft.
Size: 11 X 8.5 (inches)
Illustrations: 160 b/w and color
Product Code: SS822