Convair B-58A Hustler

Designed to meet a US Air Force requirement for a strategic bomber capable of speeds in excess of Mach 2, the Convair Hustler was the fastest such aircraft to reach squadron service outside the Soviet Union. It first flew in 1956, entering service in 1960 and was retired in 1970. Aside from a reconnaissance mission undertaken over Cuba during the 1962 Missile Crisis, the B-58 is not known to have flown any missions within hostile air-space during its short career with the US Air Force’s Strategic Air Command.

While in service, the Hustler set numerous world records including the 1,000 kilometer closed course speed of 1,284.7 mph in 1961, New York to Paris of 3 hrs. 19 min. in 1962 and the payload to altitude record (5,000 kilograms to 85,361 ft.) in 1962.

The B-58 Hustler pictured flying high over upstate New York was from the 305th Bomb Wing, 2nd Air Force, Strategic Air Command, Bunker Hill AFB, Indiana.