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From the Archives: Lockheed mock-up of supersonic transport revealed

June 27, 1966: Three technicians walk on the left delta wing of the full scale mockup of Lockheed su
June 27, 1966: Three technicians walk on the left delta wing of the full-scale mock-up of the proposed Lockheed supersonic transport that stretches 273 feet from nose to tail.
(R.L. Oliver / Los Angeles Times Archive / UCLA)

In the mid-1960s, Boeing and Lockheed raced to build a commercial supersonic passenger aircraft. The federal government committed to help subsidize the development of a commercial SST to compete with the Anglo-French Concorde.

Aviation writer Marvin Miles reported in the the June 28, 1966, Los Angeles Times:

Lockheed's supersonic transport was dramatically displayed Monday in a full scale mockup of the sleek 1,800-m.p.h. airliner the company hopes will win government approval in a tense competition with a Boeing design.

Constructed as an engineering aid for design refinements, the gleaming, white-painted model stretches 273 feet from nose to tail and details cockpit and cabin interiors, a double-delta wing and full-size landing gear – mostly in wood.

Called the Lockheed 2000, the plane is designed to carry up to 266 passengers in five-abreast seats wider than those used in intercontinental jets and streak from Los Angeles to New York – or Honolulu – in little more than two hours.

Newsmen inspecting the mockup at the company's Burbank division found its cabin similar to current jet transports in diameter, but its small, round windows measure only 6 inches across to save weight and assure pressurization at altitudes up to 70,000 feet…

This Lockheed entry lost out to the proposed Boeing 2707.

Congress canceled SST funding in 1971 following opposition to sonic booms and possible engine exhaust damage to the ozone layer.

An earlier version of this post appeared on Feb. 7, 2014.

Federal Aviation Agency test pilot Joe Tymczyszyn displays models of Lockheed, top, and Boeing, bott
July 13, 1964: Federal Aviation Agency test pilot Joe Tymczyszyn displays models of Lockheed, top, and Boeing, bottom, supersonic transport planes. Los Angeles Times Archive / UCLA

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