The X-51A Waverider, an unmanned aircraft designed to fly six times the speed of sound crashed after being dropped from a bomber over the Pacific Ocean, the Air Force announced Wednesday.
Controllers identified a fault in one of the X-51A Waverider's control fins shortly after its rocket booster had fired, the service said in a written statement. About 16 seconds into the flight, the aircraft "was not able to maintain control due to the faulty control fin and was lost," the service said.
The Air Force had hoped the craft would be able to reach speeds of up to 4,600 mph. The service said it will release details of the failed test in a few weeks, after researchers are able to analyze the data from the flight.