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Throwback Thursday; March Field Air Museum and the SR-71A Blackbird

Back in 2012 I was working in the Riverside Area when I stopped at the March Field Air Museum to view the Lockheed SR-71A Blackbird on display.






The March Field Air Museum is located off I-215 on Van Buren Boulevard in the March Air Reserve Base.  The March Field Museum first opened in 1979 and was quickly moved to the former commissary building by 1983.  Since 1993 the Museum has been located just off I-215 on Van Buren Boulevard.

The main attraction on display at the March Field Air Museum as stated above is 1 of 32 SR-71 Blackbirds ever built.  The SR-71 Blackbird was in production from 1964 to 1998 and was the fastest plane that ever existed.  In 1976 SR-71 61-7962 set a speed record of 2,193.2/Mach 3.3 and an altitude record of 85,069 feet.

The SR-71 was designed to be a stealth reconnaissance aircraft that was capable of evading surface-to-air-missiles.  The SR-71 was powered by Pratt & Whitney J58 turbo jet engines capable of producing 32,500 pound feet of thrust.  Interestingly SR-71 Blackbirds had to started by a pair of Buick Wildcat engines (I'm uncertain if it was the 401 or 425 nailheads) before being switched the Chevy Big Block engines (again I'm not certain of the displacement).

Of the 32 SR-71 Blackbirds produced 12 were lost in crashes.  The SR-71A was the most common model with 29 being produced, 2 SR-71Bs being produced, and 1 SR-71C was produced.  The SR-71A on this display on at the March Field Air Museum carries serial number 61-7975. 










The March Air Field has various different military aircraft on display.  Rather than attempting to describe all the notable ones they can be found here on my Flickr album:

March Field Air Museum

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