North American XB-70 Valkyrie

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The North American Aviation XB-70 Valkyrie was the prototype version of the proposed B-70 nuclear-armed deep-penetration strategic bomber for the United States Air Force’s (USAF) Strategic Air Command. Designed by North American Aviation in the late 1950s, the Valkyrie was a large six-engined aircraft able to fly Mach 3+ at an altitude of 70,000 feet (21,000 m), which would have allowed it to avoid interceptors, the only effective anti-bomber weapon at the time.

North American XB-70A Valkyrie in formation. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American XB-70A Valkyrie just after collision. Note the F-104 is at the forward edge of the fireball and most of both XB-70A vertical stabilizers are gone. (U.S. Air Force photo)

North American XB-70A Valkyrie (S/N 62-0001). Photo taken at Wright-Patterson AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo)