Flying Beyond the Stall: The X-31 and the Advent of Supermaneuverability
Douglas A. Joyce
Engineering & Transportation
Flying Beyond the Stall: The X-31 and the Advent of Supermaneuverability
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The X-31 has spun off a long list of valuable technologies and benefits
going far beyond the intentions of those who conceived it.

Author Dedication
Foreword: The World’s First International X-Airplane
Prologue: The Participants
Chapter 1: Origins, Design, and Development
In the Beginning…: The Quest for “Supermaneuverability”
Defining a Supermaneuverable Airplane: The Path to EFM
Design and Development of the X-31
Fabrication to Eve of First Flight
Chapter 2: Into the Air: Initial Flight Testing
Preflight Preparations Through Initial Flight Exploration
Assessing the X-31’s Basic Flying Qualities
Whither X-31? Program Relocation to Dryden
Program Expansion: Probing the Post-Stall Environment
Chapter 3: Expanding the X-31’s Research Program
The Pinball Simulations
From Pinball to TUFT
PST Aloft: Proving the X-31 “1-v-1”
PST in the Dogfight Arena: Concluding Observations
Chapter 4: The X-31 Follow-On Program
Of HUDs and Helmets
X-31 Handling Qualities and Close-In Combat
Tracking Tasks in the High-Alpha Arena
Continuously “Predicting” Aerodynamics
The X-31 and JAST’s Quest for “Quasi-Tailless” Flight
The X-31 “Goes to Sea”
The X-31 as a Quasi-Tailless Ground Attacker
Chapter 5: Desert Disaster, Triumph in Paris, and a New VECTOR
A Matter of Pitot Icing…
On to Paris
The X-31 Flies at Le Bourget
VECTOR for the Future
Chapter 6: Program Management and Direction
The International Partnership
Contractor, Government, and ITO Responsibilities
Costs, Cost Analysis, and Program Funding
Chapter 7: The X-31 in Retrospect
In Sum…
Lessons Learned
Appendix 1: Disseminating X-31 Research Results and Lessons
Appendix 2: X-31 Flight Log
Appendix 3: X-31 Dimensions, Weights, and Performance Specifications
Appendix 4: X-31 Chronology
Appendix 5: X-31 Pilots and Their Sorties
Appendix 6: Acronyms and Abbreviations
Appendix 7: X-31 Lessons Learned: An Expanded View
Selected Bibliography
About the Author
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