Blackbird

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The Blackbird (also nicknamed the “X-Jet”) is the aircraft used by the fictional superhero team the X-Men. There have been several incarnations of this craft over the years, with Cyclops and Storm as the main pilots.

History

When the X-Men first formed, they traveled in Professor Xavier's private jet and helicopter. They were advanced but fairly conventional aircraft with remote autopilots (i.e., the Professor flew them from home). Later the X-Men used a new strato-Jet that was visually based on a modified, scaled-up version of the Lockheed SR-71 "Blackbird" spy plane (hence the name), but was modified to carry several passengers, as well as for Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL). This modified Blackbird has sometimes been called the "SR-73" or the "SR-77". The original X-Men Blackbird has been destroyed and rebuilt numerous times in the course of the team's many adventures. This Blackbird has since been given to Academy X.

More recent versions of the X-Men’s jet incorporated technology created by the mutant inventor Forge, as well as alien (Shi'ar) technology, including weapon systems, holographic active camouflage, and engines capable of hypersonic speeds. One version of the Blackbird possessed an experimental cockpit windshield that was infused with traces of the same ruby quartz material used in Cyclops' visor, allowing him to project and amplify his optic blasts through the windshield.