By the time I’d completed and polished up the design for the AARC X-3 Rocketplane, I had fallen in love. I wanted to add just one more illustration to tie a bow on the project: a cutaway drawing!
The diagram is colour-coded by subsystem:
Blue = electrical systems
Purple = engines
Green = fuel tanks
Brown = mscl subsystems
Yellow = structural framework
A detail of the cockpit area. In the event of an emergency, the entire cockpit ‘cigar’ can eject and float back down to earth on parachutes:
At the fuselage midpoint, the twin-engine housings blend into a single sleek javelin-shape.
While the nose landing gear retracts, the main landing struts are fixed in aerodynamic cowlings. More than anything, this was a nod to the legendary aircraft designs of Burt Rutan.