Military Aviation


During its 24-year career, the SR-71 Blackbird gathered intelligence in some of the world’s most hostile environments

During its career, the SR-71 Blackbird gathered intelligence in some of the world’s most hostile environments. The SR-71 was conceived to operate at extreme velocities, altitudes and temperatures: actually it was the first aircraft constructed with titanium, as the friction caused by air molecules passing over its surface at Mach 2.6 would melt a conventional aluminum frame.

This print is available in multiple sizes from – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. SR-71A Blackbird 61-7972 “Skunkworks”

Its engineering was so cutting edge that even the tools to build the SR-71 needed to be designed from scratch.

The gorgeous infographic in this article provides some interesting facts about the story of the legendary Blackbird.

However, if you want to know more than what already provided by the infographic, here we list some additional interesting facts about the iconic SR-71.

– The camera on the SR-71 could accurately capture the license plate of a car from 80,000 ft.
– It was named Blackbird due to its advanced stealth capabilities and heat absorbing black paint, but “Habu,” “SR,” “Lady in Black,” and “Sled” are other known nicknames.
– From the cockpit at the pilot can see the curvature of the Earth and stars during daylight while flying in the top one percent of atmosphere.
– Over 4,000 missiles have been fired at the SR-71, none of them hit.
– The SR-71’s celestial navigation system was called “R2-D2.”
– The structure of the Blackbird was designed to seal and tighten at altitude, so on the ground it “creaked” a lot and leaked fluids.

Quite impressive don’t you think?

Source: Airman Magazine

Photo credit: Airman Magazine / U.S. Air Force

Artwork courtesy of

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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