Mirage PressureSuit

High Altitude Flight in the Mirage IIIC


In late March 1962, I was selected along with Jim McDivitt (later an Apollo astronaut) and Jess Green, a test pilot from Eglin AFB, to go to France and evaluate the Mirage IIIC which was just entering their squadrons. It was being considered for equipping NATO squadrons. It was an absolute delight to fly.


Mirage III

  I flew one flight with an auxiliary rocket engine installed. I started the engine near the end of the runway, climbed to 38,000ft and accelerated to mach 1.8 then snapped up to 75,000ft. At that point the low fuel warning light was on and I headed for the field with sufficient fuel to land with the engine still running. On one mission I accelerated out to Mach 2, turned off the stability control switch, pressed in full rudder and pulsed the stick. It was stable as a rock.



Aircraft Flown

Mirage IIICC, Fouga, Super Mystere, Etandard, Meteor

NORD 2508, NORD 1101

Super Mystere
Gloster Meteor
NORD 2508
NORD 1101