Concept

William J. Knight

Summary
William John "Pete" Knight (November 18, 1929 – May 7, 2004) (Col, USAF) was an American aeronautical engineer, politician, Vietnam War combat pilot, test pilot, and astronaut. He was one of twelve pilots who flew the North American X-15, an experimental spaceplane jointly operated by the U.S. Air Force and NASA. He was also selected for participation in the X-20 Dyna-Soar program. On October 3, 1967, Knight piloted X-15 Flight 188, the program's fastest flight. Flying at a maximum Mach of 6.7 and a maximum speed of 4,520 mph (7,274 km/h), he set a speed record for flight in a winged, powered aircraft. The flight was made in the X-15A-2, the second of three planes in the X-15 fleet. Two weeks later on October 17, Knight flew X-15 Flight 190, reaching a maximum altitude above 50 miles. This qualified him as an astronaut according to the United States definition of the boundary of space. However, this altitude did not surpass the Kármán line, the internationally accepted boundary of 100 kilometers (62 miles). It was the last successful flight of the X-15-3, the fleet's third plane. On November 15, X-15 Flight 191 ended in disaster, killing pilot Michael Adams and destroying the X-15-3. Knight was born November 18, 1929, in Noblesville, Indiana, to parents William T. Knight (1906–1968) and Mary Emma Knight (1909–1959). Following high school, Knight attended Butler University and Purdue University. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology in 1958. Knight was married to Helena Stone and they had three sons, Steve, Peter, and David. Helena predeceased Knight. Knight remarried and at his death in 2004 he was survived by his widow Gail, a brother, three sons, four stepchildren and 15 grandchildren. Knight joined the United States Air Force in 1951. While only a second lieutenant, he flew an F-89 at the National Air Show in 1954 and won the Allison Jet Trophy. Starting in 1958, following his graduation from both U.S.
About this result
This page is automatically generated and may contain information that is not correct, complete, up-to-date, or relevant to your search query. The same applies to every other page on this website. Please make sure to verify the information with EPFL's official sources.
Related publications

Loading

Related people

Loading

Related units

Loading

Related concepts

Loading

Related courses

Loading

Related lectures

Loading

Related MOOCs

Loading