Edwards Air Force Base
Known for more "first flights" and record flights than any other place, Edwards Air Force Base is legendary. Centered around an ancient dry lakebed in the Mojave Desert 90 miles north of Los Angeles, activity at Edwards has sharpened the cutting edge of aviation and aerospace since the 1940s. The complex is a strategic flight test, research, and development center for the U.S. Air Force, NASA, and civilian contractors. Since the 1950s, almost every U.S. military aircraft has been partially tested here. The skies above Edwards have been the scene of remarkable achievements, including Chuck Yeager's world-famous breaking of the sound barrier in 1947. The base was first established near the small town of Muroc in 1933 and became renowned for its giant runways painted onto the flat, dry lakebed. Speed and altitude records were commonplace at Edwards during the 1950s. Suborbital space flights began there in the 1960s. In the 1970s it was the primary testing site for the space shuttle program. Dramatic aerospace research continues today at Edwards, America's proving ground for the future of high tech aviation.
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