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Air Force Ejects Bear from B-58 At Altitude of 35,000 Feet

Mar. 22, 1962 - The Air Force ejected a bear strapped inside a capsule from a B-58 traveling 870 miles an hour at an altitude of 35,000 feet yesterday. The bear and the capsule parachuted to earth unharmed 7 minutes and 49 seconds later. It was the first time in the series of such tests that a living animal had been ejected at supersonic speed. A bear was used because it is nearly the weight of a man. The new capsule, a clamshell closure around an ejection seat, is designed to protect crewmen who have to bail out at high speeds and altitudes. It not only shields them from supersonic slipstream blast but also provides oxygen on the way down.

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