An unmanned experimental U.S. Air Force aircraft operated as intended in its last trial flight on Wednesday, reaching speeds in excess of five times the speed of sound, Aviation Week reported.
The Air Force has yet to officially reveal the specifics of the flight, but the X-51A WaveRider is believed to have attained hypersonic flight before it splashed down in the Pacific test range.
Three previous flight tests failed to meet all programmed steps. The most recent trial in August 2012 ended abruptly when the aircraft broke apart over the Pacific seconds after the test began.
If the fourth test is confirmed as successful, it could help turn the program around.