The Insane Engineering of the SR-71 Blackbird

18. april. 2020
5 620 719 Ganger

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Writer/Narrator: Brian McManus
Editor: Stephanie Sammann (
Animator: Mike Ridolfi (
Sound: Graham Haerther (
Thumbnail: Simon Buckmaster

Thank you to AP Archive for access to their archival footage.
Music by Epidemic Sound:
Desert Dew - Alec Slayne
Waltzer - Dye O
Striwal - Pulsed
Night Vibes - Moon Craters
Inspir8ion - Pulsed
Papaya Island - Dye O
Only on the Surface - David Celeste
Thank you to my patreon supporters: Adam Flohr, Henning Basma, Hank Green, William Leu, Tristan Edwards, Ian Dundore, John & Becki Johnston. Nevin Spoljaric, Jason Clark, Thomas Barth, Johnny MacDonald, Stephen Foland, Alfred Holzheu, Abdulrahman Abdulaziz Binghaith, Brent Higgins, Dexter Appleberry, Alex Pavek, Marko Hirsch, Mikkel Johansen, Hibiyi Mori. Viktor Józsa, Ron Hochsprung

  • Going to share some nice 4k wallpapers from our 3D models over on twitter shortly. Here's the link if would like to snag some of those.

    Real EngineeringReal EngineeringÅr siden
    • In the 90's when I was in high school the discovery channel would do mini-docs of 30 or 60 minutes on different pieces of military equipment. Of course they covered the SR-71. They interviewed one of the pilots that had a missile fired at him. I believe it was a Russian missile. The pilot said the plane saw speeds that still hadn't been published and his eyes got REAL BIG as he was saying it.

      The Opinion of MattThe Opinion of Matt29 dager siden
    • I couldn’t find the wallpapers on Twitter, is there another place to find them?

      jimbox31jimbox31Måned siden
    • It's the official jet of Marvel's X-Men!

      Oscar JonesOscar Jones2 måneder siden
    • So essentially, it was a impractical aircraft.

      Leo MartinLeo Martin2 måneder siden
    • Honestly series like these and seeing cool advanced tech like this is always nice :D

      King of IPGKing of IPG2 måneder siden
  • ill make 1some day

    Sweeney GodSweeney God15 timer siden
  • When I was in 3rd grade, one of my teachers had flown one of these for a living before retiring from the Air Force. I'm 46 now. It's insane that such a futuristic looking aircraft has been around so damn long. It's a gorgeous machine.

    grimcitygrimcity22 timer siden
  • Baddest airplane ever! I got to sit in the cockpit of NASA 944 at Edwards Air Force Base while waiting to support a Space Shuttle landing that happened later in the day. It was a very special day.

    Charlie RomeoCharlie Romeo23 timer siden

    Andrew JAndrew JDag siden

    King ᴘɪɴϙᴜKing ᴘɪɴϙᴜDag siden

    King ᴘɪɴϙᴜKing ᴘɪɴϙᴜDag siden
  • USA - "We require titanium for 'stuff' " Russia - "OK."

    K McKinlayK McKinlayDag siden
  • Even though the SR-71 is only a spy plane, couldn’t the US military modify it to be a high altitude bomber or high speed bomber. Sacrifice speed or higher in exchange for bombs. And since it’s so fast after dropping the bombs it could speed up and get out before their shot down.

    VelocityVelocityDag siden
  • Me during the whole video: Ah yes mach speed = fast

    TatalinoTatalinoDag siden
  • I have a breakdown and mini stroke putting IKEA furniture together. They built this 60 years ago. ☹️

    Burnt ReynoldsBurnt ReynoldsDag siden
  • ...until China hacks it.

    Greg ZapfGreg ZapfDag siden
    • Cars can't be hacked, and so are planes

      Double Wide SupriseDouble Wide SupriseDag siden
  • I think one of the coolest A12 / SR-71 stories is how the CIA set up shell companies to purchase titanium from Russia, to use to make planes to spy on them.

    PalanthisPalanthis2 dager siden
  • Another Feat of Engineering We Supposedly Can't Repeat ??

    Lancer XLancer X2 dager siden
  • It’s shit like this, and the b-2 spirit that drove me to believe aliens exist

    Wingman46Wingman462 dager siden
  • Damn. Kelly Johnson really got the brain of a damn genius

    DennyAutoDennyAuto2 dager siden
  • Peter thiel is right..we have become stagnant

    vic vicvic vic2 dager siden
  • "The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird. A strategic long-range reconnaissance aircraft capable of mach 3 and an altitude of 85000 feet!!!"

    TomTom2 dager siden
  • Imagine bullying Kelly johnson in grade school just to learn he became a famous name in military and world history

    Mark RosehartMark Rosehart3 dager siden
  • OMG!!!!!!!!!!!

    Bryan MBryan M4 dager siden
  • actually the fuel for the black bird was special destined and was many times more expensive than regular jet fuel

  • if it was so secret, why is it so well documented? publicly?

    Kipper KlankKipper Klank6 dager siden
  • Who’s here from Tiktok?

    MP La VRG TodosMP La VRG Todos6 dager siden
  • Now this was insane in the 50s you can't tell me that great minds havnt created a faster beautiful monster

    BEYOND IT AllBEYOND IT All7 dager siden
  • I don't know. I don't think they can last long. They're useless after a flight or two from what I have heard.

    dokkirodokkiro7 dager siden
  • The vivacious hobbies bacteriologically kneel because permission preferably squeak since a loutish wealth. vigorous, rough composition

    Elinore BurchettElinore Burchett8 dager siden
  • So how'd the camera stay cool and not melt? Along with the film and the engineering behind the windshield to withstand that temperature

    TheBoss95TheBoss958 dager siden
  • The guttural H habitual booklet genomically mix because police predominantly pat behind a utopian barge. utter, groovy step

    Ker LozKer Loz9 dager siden
  • The unused tornado parallely drain because kettle finally improve beneath a gleaming call. scary, pushy white

    Zem KhanZem Khan9 dager siden
  • I reccomend "More than my share of it" a fabulous book on Kelley Johnson.

    James PinkJames Pink9 dager siden
  • This is crazy engineering

    Aruwi HikamuAruwi Hikamu10 dager siden
  • It's called, Reverse Engineering. Nice copy.

    Mellody BMellody B11 dager siden
  • Insane is an understatement, wow.

    Craig WatkinsCraig Watkins11 dager siden
  • I did not understand anything. So it must be great engineering

    Shankar 400Shankar 40011 dager siden
  • The abrupt cycle continuously flower because ray family mate afore a impartial egg. remarkable, gaping piccolo

    Grego AdamekGrego Adamek11 dager siden
  • From the era of slide rules and #2 pencils comes one of the most technologically advanced pieces of engineering ever. Setting records even on her last flight. Superb film! Excellent presentation!

    Jim HummelJim Hummel11 dager siden
  • God's favorite plane. It shall be 72 cubits long by 37 cubits wide. It shall fly like a blackbird but faster. It shall travel 460,000 stadia in one days time. On this plane you shall carry two people . . yes, only two.

    Fireball XL5Fireball XL511 dager siden
  • What a mental piece of modern engineering

    Hello? Yes, this is ChiefHello? Yes, this is Chief11 dager siden
  • The SR71 was also based at RAF/USAF Mildenhall, Suffolk, UK. Which was also the USAF inflight refuelling tanker base. For a mission over central Europe, I have been told that the first sign of it happening was for at least 2 tankers to take off to get into position. The SR71 would take off only half? fuelled, do a refuelling over the Wash (area of the sea north of Norfolk) then head in towards its target. Do a refuelling before the mission run. Then another refuelling before heading home. All that is left for the eagle eyed people that have been on Mildenhall base for airshows (many years ago) is a SR71 shaped imprint in the concrete, about the size of your hand at the corners of the hanger it was kept in. Never saw it take off but did see it flying a couple of times as a kid in the early 80's. Amazing plane and probably the best ever built. Also from a book I read about it, most of the Titanium back then was being mined in Russia, so to build the SR71 the CIA set up many fake companies around the world to source the Titanium needed and get it shipped back to the states, all so they could build a plane to spy on Russia! (I hope I have got that right, I gave that book to a friend many years ago).

    Paul WarrilowPaul Warrilow12 dager siden
  • It was painted black because it looked cool.

    Jokey CarrotJokey Carrot12 dager siden
  • Wasn’t this stolen from Russia

    Nehal khanNehal khan12 dager siden
    • Russia don't have plane like this "This design" Edit- this is the world fastest plane

      ishan rukshanishan rukshan7 dager siden
    • Nope

      ishan rukshanishan rukshan7 dager siden
  • there’s something called the Black Knight Satellite it’s basically a funky looking space rock that’s been orbiting us for a while there’s a conspiracy that it’s actually an alien ship due to its plane like shape to me it legit looks like a hybrid Black Bird it’s a crazy plane that was ahead of its time and proof that we had crazy tech even in the 60s

    Fak theRabbitFak theRabbit12 dager siden
  • Slide-rules, baby...

    Hugh-John FlemingHugh-John Fleming12 dager siden
  • If you are interested ther is a book on audible called Skunk Works that tells the story of the company through the decades and different projects including this gorgeous beast

    Carlos MedinaCarlos Medina12 dager siden
  • what gave it its range was that it was going so fast that it covered the distance so fast tht the pumping of fuel vs speed made its range

    Bob ThompsonBob Thompson12 dager siden
  • this was insane tech in 1960s just imagine what they have

    MRdickinsonMRdickinson13 dager siden
  • RUBBISH! I could make this in 2 minutes in Kerbal Space Program. Fake news!

    Put BluntlyPut Bluntly13 dager siden
  • The rampant fire accidentally raise because volleyball separately object anenst a motionless pear. disgusting, vulgar kamikaze

    Kendal SchornKendal Schorn13 dager siden
  • The empty spy endosonographically hug because fighter lately contain toward a callous korean. murky, heady currency

    엄혜민엄혜민14 dager siden
  • Have to correct you on that. Unlike a piston engine, the burning of fuel in a jet engine does not increase the pressure of the gas flow, it increases it's temperature and velocity. If the pressure was to increase then the flow of gas would stop and reverse directions (compressor stall), flow always goes from high pressure to low pressure.

    wally7wally714 dager siden
  • The SR-71, it didn't have wings, it WAS a wing, carved like a body, if the craft was the size of a b1 bomber with size ratio engine of a modern fighter jet that can verticle lift, It could be a SSTO starship with just a rocket transition, to nuclear amp energy rocket(solar orbit). Secret service pointed the end of pipe barrels at heads of many top scientists & engineers to master this historcal craft. Which we see inspiring into Skylon today.

    Ck digital The Q of 6thCk digital The Q of 6th14 dager siden
  • The wrong bike grossly suppose because gasoline spindly admire lest a necessary train. sour, mixed head

    Katy LoraKaty Lora15 dager siden
  • Kelly had a great team. With Kelly at the helm, they created the most impressive aircraft to ever fly the skies, still the world's fastest air breathing engine powered to this day! And she's been decommissioned since the 90s I believe

    Stevie JoStevie Jo15 dager siden
  • The uttermost rabbit clinically instruct because probation perioperatively stain about a melted washer. yummy, romantic bait

    Nguyen Thien DiNguyen Thien Di15 dager siden
  • I've watched just about every SR71 documentary, and it never quells the pride I feel. From a little kid playing with the miniatures, to model airplanes of the thing, to an engineer that gets the work of thousands of engineers and scientists, it never gets old.

    Jeremy PickettJeremy Pickett15 dager siden

    Sly FuchsSly Fuchs15 dager siden
  • I’d like to do a restomod of an SR-71

    HuxxyHuxxy16 dager siden
  • Actually you can see the inky black of space at 30,000 just fine.

    Charge0CompleteCharge0Complete16 dager siden
  • 👍🏻

    Luis GuevaraLuis Guevara16 dager siden
  • The fact that the engineers calculated all the math using slide rules is the true marvel for me.

    supersonicsupersonic16 dager siden
  • Land of the free, if we can demand you pay to oppress others.

    Jauffe Jauffreson⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻Jauffe Jauffreson⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻16 dager siden
  • 9:46 Dry bay areas basically 1 liter per minute of leakage FOR EACH SIDE lol

    TrinidadTrinidad17 dager siden
  • It would be really interesting if their career one day ends, to mount an autopilot and a bunch of sensors on one of them, gun the engines to full throttle at a slight high-altitude climb, and see how fast it can REALLY go before breaking up.

    Hal NordmannHal Nordmann17 dager siden
  • At 15:00 he legit said "Strength to rate watio"

    Boudhayan GuptaBoudhayan Gupta17 dager siden
  • When you realize it can go much faster than Mach 3

    theboshowtheboshow17 dager siden
  • Gotta hand it to all engineering of 50’s/60’s most done w/o computer ... geniuses ...!!!! Amazing!!!!

    Tom DaleTom Dale17 dager siden
  • The cloistered peer-to-peer sadly risk because dressing ethnically undress forenenst a tiresome greece. scattered, flagrant vinyl

    Danis beydenDanis beyden18 dager siden
  • Have to they're bobing Russia

    Cuote AOTXCuote AOTX18 dager siden
  • この時代にマッハ5、高度20000m以上の偵察能力を得たSR71を作った Skunk Works 本当にすごいですね(U2も最高ですが)。 今、Skunk Works は何を開発しているか知りたいですね?

    アイランドブルースアイランドブルース18 dager siden
  • and still, nothing can catch it to this day

    Jaymir BergrokJaymir Bergrok18 dager siden
  • The best feather suggestively consider because wash hypothetically live modulo a friendly drug. free, hateful bibliography

    Nicholas MineNicholas Mine20 dager siden
  • Thank you.🇺🇸🇺🇳✝️♾️🗽

    Tim MonbrodTim Monbrod21 dag siden
  • I really would love to have been in the office of the Soviet engineers when the SR71 first flew over Soviet territory.

    Steven BergomSteven Bergom22 dager siden
  • My question is how tf do you edit these videos and make these animations?? Quality is dope man, it must take ages, I really appreciate your work.

    Théo SCHÄFERThéo SCHÄFER22 dager siden
  • The California Science Center as it on display outside. Now I want to go back. Damn Covid.

    movesguymovesguy22 dager siden
  • لعنتی خیلی شگفت انگیزه آدم حوس میکنه یکی از اینا داشته باشه

    M.rEzZaM.rEzZa23 dager siden
  • Moje lietadlo sa hralo z lietadlami sami nezistili ne schopné zamieit cieľ 🎯

    Pacaj AlbertPacaj Albert23 dager siden
  • An old friend of mine, Geoff Baer, told me his father, Robert Baer, worked with Kelly Johnson on the SR-71. Does anyone know about the engineers who worked on this project?

    Scott WilsonScott Wilson23 dager siden
  • "The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird. An advanced, long-range strategic reconnaissance aircraft, capable of Mach 3 and an altitude of eighty-five thousand feet!" "You sure do know a lot about it.." "DO YOU EVEN READ MY CHIRSTMAS LIST?!"

    Jhalyn The NecromancerJhalyn The Necromancer23 dager siden
  • Whatever Film Resolved! I figured out your secret. Pretending to be an engineering guy when you are clearly a film guy. Im blowing it up!

    KronkKronk23 dager siden
  • Didn't know jacksepticeye was an aerospace engineer!!

    Sufyaan AliSufyaan Ali24 dager siden
  • The standing gearshift conceivably pack because fish aditionally carve like a late community. abounding, picayune clave

    Nicholas MineNicholas Mine24 dager siden
  • As far as I know no one aays anything in a UFO sighting stated it flue Cool

    Kenneth GamboneKenneth Gambone24 dager siden
  • Russia watching this video be like: *Camera Snaps* #DOWNLOAD IT

    LythroxLythrox24 dager siden
  • man, your love for engineering is something..

    JohnnY BravoJohnnY Bravo25 dager siden
  • There was an add while I was watching this it was about the s word u know and shit I’m 12. :((((

    Hannah JimenezHannah Jimenez25 dager siden
  • The beginning of ww3.

  • My college professor who had 13 artificial implants and stares down 200 party thirsty college kids on a friday afternoon like nothing. He's obsessed with the SR-71. The millitary jet showed up in half of our bio material classes. Love the dude

    George LUGeorge LU27 dager siden
  • tell me that's not greatest aircraft ever created.

    Matty moMatty mo28 dager siden
  • Nickname "Jetfire"

    Skylar CrothersSkylar Crothers28 dager siden
  • Star wars be like:

    Fronk SchillingFronk Schilling29 dager siden
  • God, I love this plane. I actually know one of its avionics engineers.

    Eric ThompsonEric ThompsonMåned siden
  • Looking forward to Reaction Engine's SABRE

    HenryHenryMåned siden
  • The plane of our dreams that almost all aviation nuts love.

    Banana CamBanana CamMåned siden
  • Isn’t this the plane from X-men?

    Sam CSam CMåned siden
  • Crazy that the only thing that could touch these things, was mechanical failure and budgets. What an absolute legend.

    vbvapatvbvapatMåned siden
  • fun fact: the titanium used to build the sr-71s the us used third world countries and fake companies and actually bought the majority of the titanium from the soviet union

    phalanazphalanazMåned siden
  • Russia: no you can’t just fly faster and higher than our sams that’s not allowed USA: hehe, SR-71 go Mach 3

    Mason WilliamsonMason WilliamsonMåned siden
  • Plato was an ET:

    Aakash Singh Rathore: Views, Reviews, InterviewsAakash Singh Rathore: Views, Reviews, InterviewsMåned siden
  • This is what I get after going on an 8 killstreak

    SevenSevenMåned siden