|The first flight of an SR-71 took place on December 22, 1964, and the first SR-71 to enter service was delivered to the 4200th (later, 9th) Strategic Reconnaissance Wing at Beale Air Force Base, Calif., in January 1966.|
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The aircraft were permanently retired a few years later. Throughout its nearly 24-year career, the SR-71 remained the world's fastest and highest-flying operational aircraft. From 80,000 feet it could survey 100,000 square miles of Earth's surface per hour. On July 28, 1976, an SR-71 set two world records for its class: an absolute speed record of 2,193.167 miles per hour and an absolute altitude record of 85,068.997 feet.
|The Lockheed SR-71 remains one of the most exotic and mysterious aircraft of all time. Its mighty J58 engines, with a thrust equivalent to 45 diesel locomotives,|
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