A dramatic account of "Bill" Bridgeman's first flight in the Douglas X-3 supersonic research aircraft on October 20th last year is given in the current Atlantic edition of Time.

A variety of troubles, the precise nature of which is not stated, appear to have occurred on the first flight - including "acting up" on the part of the turbojets. When recalled, Bridgeman remarked to Chuck Yeager, who was "flying chase" in an F-86, "This thing doesn't want to stay in the air." He touched down at well over 200 m.p.h. It was Yeager who virtually guided Bridgeman in for his landing, for view from the X-3's cockpit is practically nil. "It's a nasty little beast," Bridgeman is quoted as remarking, "and the Skyrocket was a queen."

Large parts of the X-3's skin - especially those which receive heat from the turbojets as well as from skin friction - are made of titanium.

Source: Flight International