Ryan BQM-34 Firebee

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The Firebee, originally designated the Q-2, was a high-speed target drone for both surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles. It was used primarily for the testing of newly-developed missiles and for the training of fighter-interceptor pilots whose aircraft were armed with missiles.

Capable of being launched from the ground or from an airplane in flight, the Firebee is radio-controlled during its mission by an operator on the ground. Upon being hit by a missile and disabled, or upon completing its mission undamaged, the Firebee is lowered safely to earth by a self-contained parachute.

The Firebee on display, the first XQ-2C built and flown, established a record of 25 flights at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., from 1958 to 1960. It was obtained from Ryan in May 1960.

TECHNICAL NOTES:
Engine: Continental J69-T-29 of 1,700 lbs. thrust
Maximum speed: 580 mph
Stalling speed: 203 mph
Range: 600 miles
Service ceiling: 51,300 ft. 
Span: 12 ft. 11 in.
Length: 22 ft. 11 in.
Height: 6 ft. 7 in.
Weight: 2,062 lbs. loaded


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