This official NASA history document - converted for accurate flowing-text e-book format reproduction - is the fascinating account of the life of Donald Mallick, a NASA research test pilot. This book puts the reader in the pilot's seat for a "day at the office" unlike any other. It recounts the tragic 1966 mid-air collision with the XB-70; describes flights of the lifting body and YF-12 blackbird, and details work with the Apollo Lunar Landing Research Vehicle.
The Smell of Kerosene tells the dramatic story of a NASA research pilot who logged over 11,000 flight hours in more than 125 types of aircraft. Donald Mallick gives the reader fascinating firsthand descriptions of his early naval flight training, carrier operations, and his research flying career with NASA and its predecessor agency, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA).
Mallick joined the NACA as a research pilot at the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory at Hampton, Virginia, where he flew modified helicopters and jets, and witnessed the NACA's evolution into the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
After transferring to the NASA Flight Research Center (now NASA Dryden Flight Research Center) at Edwards, California, he became involved with projects that further pushed the boundaries of aerospace technology. These included the giant delta-winged XB-70 supersonic research airplane, the wingless M2-F1 lifting body vehicle, and the triple-sonic YF-12 Blackbird. Mallick also test flew the Lunar Landing Research Vehicle (LLRV) and helped develop techniques used in training astronauts to land on the Moon.