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Old 14th June 2019, 06:53 PM   #241
smartcooky
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
U-2 never got decommissioned & then resurrected. At least into the 1990s, they had been in continuous use since their start, including for some other countries.

SR-71 did get temporarily brought back once. I have the idea stuck in my head that it was for one of the wars in Iraq, but that might be because I know the same thing happened with battleships at that time and the memory leaked over.

It might seem like the simplest solution for surveillance from above would be to just have enough satellites up there that when one gets too far from the subject another gets close enough. A dozen, for example, would be enough to put them only 30° apart from each other, which would put any point on Earth in line of site to 5-6 of them at all times. A low orbit might mean each one zips by in under an hour, but the job can just be handed off to the next one in line. I long presumed that that must be the way it is these days, although not during most of the life spans of U-2 & SR-71. But it turns out that the number and orbits of satellites that we've actually launched haven't been arranged that way. Given that there are lots & lots of other satellites for civilian functions (or both, like GPS) up there, this can't be because better military coverage would cost too much, so I wonder why...
Way under an hour.

For example the ISS is in a 400 km orbit. If it passes directly overhead your location, the entire pass from horizon to horizon is over in under five minutes,
Also, keep in mind that spy satellites are usually in much lower orbits, around 130 km to 200 km, and that to be useful, they need to be within a few degrees of directly overhead. Spy satellites usually have only 30 seconds at most in a suitable position for photography.
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Old 15th June 2019, 05:19 AM   #242
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Line of sight isn't good enough. Directly overhead is ideal, and a cone of viewing angles around that is acceptable.

You'd need a ton of satellites for near continuous coverage of the globe entire.

So we make do with less satellites, and a rolling swath of viewing stripes, and occasional gaps in coverage.
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Old 15th June 2019, 03:21 PM   #243
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How about the SNECMA Coloeptere?

or the Leduc 010 and 022?

sorry - no time to get links to Wiki right now...
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Old 15th June 2019, 03:43 PM   #244
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
they need to be within a few degrees of directly overhead.
This needs some esplainin.
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Old 15th June 2019, 05:49 PM   #245
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https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikiped..._ramp_1959.jpg


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Old 15th June 2019, 09:10 PM   #246
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
This needs some esplainin.


Like any camera, those on board spy satellites have a field of view. In order for a target to be in the field of view the satellite has to be within half angle of the field of view of directly overhead.

Additionally, these types of satellites are generally "down-looking" not "side-looking". Anything else would either require excessive use of the satellite's RCS wheels for orientation, or would require the camera body to have a two-axis tilt control system, which is very complex to engineer for space. Both of these attributes would severely shorten the operational life of the satellite. In the case of HEXAGON, it was capable of this sort of reorientation.. they could scan up to 120°, but this would require the retasking of the satellite, involving either or both re-orientation and altering its orbit. Both of these are hard on limited resources, so it not generally done unless the matter is urgent. Under normal circumstances, they would just wait until they had a better pass.

Surveillance satellites such as HEXAGON took a 36 mile by 36 mile image on a 9" x 9" large format film, from a height of 90 to 200 miles. A bit quick of math reveals that the field of view on each frame was.....

at 90 miles = 22.6°
at 200 miles = 10.3°

So, under normal circumstances, for a target of HEXAGON to be photographed, the satellite will have to be between 5.15° and 11.3° of directly overhead.... and as spy satellites go, HEXAGON has a relatively wide field of view.
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Old 15th June 2019, 09:10 PM   #247
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
This needs some esplainin.
K. Oblique views are not good. Ya got distortion and a thicker amount of atmosphere to peer through.
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Old 16th June 2019, 02:57 AM   #248
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
U-2 never got decommissioned & then resurrected. At least into the 1990s, they had been in continuous use since their start, including for some other countries.

SR-71 did get temporarily brought back once.
Thanks. I had that the wrong way around.
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Old 16th June 2019, 02:59 AM   #249
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Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
That looks terrifying.
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Old 16th June 2019, 03:15 AM   #250
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Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
Thanks. I had that the wrong way around.

The U2 got a major electronics upgrade in 2012.

Here's the U2 spotters guide to some of it many configurations

https://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/a-...any-1539282603

Only two aircraft that I know of are older than the U2 (Aug 1955) and still in current US military service, the C-130 (Aug 1954) and the B-52 (Feb 1955).
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Old 16th June 2019, 04:53 AM   #251
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...the latter of which, like the U-2, had its replacements designed, tested, & put into production, and were found to do the job better, but got budget-cut into numbers too small to actually replace them, so the full replacement didn't happen. (And with B-52, it happened twice.)
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Old 16th June 2019, 07:04 AM   #252
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
https://www.dropbox.com/s/eaiklvnp4w...tFoV.png?raw=1

Like any camera, those on board spy satellites have a field of view. In order for a target to be in the field of view the satellite has to be within half angle of the field of view of directly overhead.

Additionally, these types of satellites are generally "down-looking" not "side-looking". Anything else would either require excessive use of the satellite's RCS wheels for orientation, or would require the camera body to have a two-axis tilt control system, which is very complex to engineer for space. Both of these attributes would severely shorten the operational life of the satellite. In the case of HEXAGON, it was capable of this sort of reorientation.. they could scan up to 120°, but this would require the retasking of the satellite, involving either or both re-orientation and altering its orbit. Both of these are hard on limited resources, so it not generally done unless the matter is urgent. Under normal circumstances, they would just wait until they had a better pass.

Surveillance satellites such as HEXAGON took a 36 mile by 36 mile image on a 9" x 9" large format film, from a height of 90 to 200 miles. A bit quick of math reveals that the field of view on each frame was.....

at 90 miles = 22.6°
at 200 miles = 10.3°

So, under normal circumstances, for a target of HEXAGON to be photographed, the satellite will have to be between 5.15° and 11.3° of directly overhead.... and as spy satellites go, HEXAGON has a relatively wide field of view.
(Note that my original remark was not about satellites replacing ALL types of spyplanes, just a given hypersonic drone with an appalling loss-rate, even not counting enemy action)

What you write above makes perfect sense, but many of those factors also apply, to greater or lesser degree, to spyplanes. Essentially, the spyplane, going lower, can get sharper pictures, but they are also plagued by vibration and buffeting by turbulence.

I think the difference may be more a matter of application.

Satellites are strategic: You can conduct a continuous long-term observation of enemy held territory without risk of getting shot down (as of yet, at least). And the enemy can do little but try to hide his stuff when he knows satellites are overhead.

Recon planes are tactical: You can find out what is happening just now, but at a higher risk. You have an element of surprise, but you are vulnerable.

Possibly, in the not so distant future, we shall see expendable drones that get dropped from high altitude, swoop down and take hig-res pictures, transmit them to a satellite link and then self-destruct.

Hans
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Old 16th June 2019, 08:37 AM   #253
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Possibly, in the not so distant future, we shall see expendable drones that get dropped from high altitude, swoop down and take hig-res pictures, transmit them to a satellite link and then self-destruct.

Photobombs! What a great idea.

Depending on the size of the "self-destruct" charge, could also be useful for taking a picture of your target for posterity, just before blowing it up.

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Old 16th June 2019, 11:26 AM   #254
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Don't forget the Shackleton, some of those had contra rotating props but like the Gannet they are turboprop, not piston engines.
Shackleton had RR Griffon engines which are very much piston engines.
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Old 16th June 2019, 11:38 AM   #255
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
One reason for the seemingly inferior performance of the B17 was its far heavier defensive armament, up to 13 cal 50 machine-guns. The Lanc had far less and relied on operating at night.

Hans
The defensive armament of the B17 did not save it. Losses were unsustainable until they introduced long range fighter escorts.

Incidentally, the B17 was vastly superior to the Lancaster in one area: it could fly about 15,000 higher.
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Old 16th June 2019, 12:13 PM   #256
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
The defensive armament of the B17 did not save it. Losses were unsustainable until they introduced long range fighter escorts.

Incidentally, the B17 was vastly superior to the Lancaster in one area: it could fly about 15,000 higher.
Mmm, according to data I can find, it did have somewhat higher ceiling, but not that much.

As for armament: Well, the idea that a bomber formation could fight it's way through a determined fighter defense was simply an illusion. As long as they could stay in formation, however, they were no trifle for attacking fighters.

Hans
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Old 16th June 2019, 12:18 PM   #257
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Photobombs! What a great idea.

Depending on the size of the "self-destruct" charge, could also be useful for taking a picture of your target for posterity, just before blowing it up.

"If you see one coming, smile!"
Ya, that would be the thing. I was thinking of drones in the range of commercial (fixed wing) drones, so the practical explosive payload would be modest, but ... trust military experts to create some mischief from it.

Certainly, commercial drones are being used for bombing in the middle-east.

Hans
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Old 16th June 2019, 01:15 PM   #258
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Shackleton had RR Griffon engines which are very much piston engines.
You are correct of course.
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Old 16th June 2019, 06:09 PM   #259
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Shackleton had RR Griffon engines which are very much piston engines.
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
You are correct of course.
Although I recall there was a version that used two auxiliary jet engines installed in the rear of the outer engine nacelles (one in each) to assist during take-off.
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Old 16th June 2019, 08:45 PM   #260
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Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
A more recent also-ran few have heard of; The Dassault Mirage 4000. Big brother to the Mirage 2000.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dassault_Mirage_4000
Some fun oddballs for anybody who likes fighters with delta wings & canards...

An F-15 with canards:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DUCZPzzUMAAWgiG.jpg

(Notice it also had flat horizontal paddles for its engine nozzles, like F-22's thrust vectoring system. This thing actually had those nozzles and more conventional-looking round nozzles at two different times, for experiments on two different thrust vectoring systems together with the canards.)

An F-4 with canards:
https://i.redd.it/gepjojlmz8p11.jpg

Weird how they just stuck canards on planes that already had tail fins but didn't build one with only the canards and no tail fins, which ended up as the standard way to do canards

A delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/51/7b...93be976d15.jpg

Another delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/51/7b...93be976d15.jpg

(Although this angle doesn't show it well, this one was made with its left wing slightly longer than its right wing, the same in the back & middle of the wings but extended farther forward at the front, to collect experimental data on both versions.)
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Old 16th June 2019, 10:40 PM   #261
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
Some fun oddballs for anybody who likes fighters with delta wings & canards...

An F-15 with canards:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DUCZPzzUMAAWgiG.jpg

(Notice it also had flat horizontal paddles for its engine nozzles, like F-22's thrust vectoring system. This thing actually had those nozzles and more conventional-looking round nozzles at two different times, for experiments on two different thrust vectoring systems together with the canards.)

An F-4 with canards:
https://i.redd.it/gepjojlmz8p11.jpg

Weird how they just stuck canards on planes that already had tail fins but didn't build one with only the canards and no tail fins, which ended up as the standard way to do canards

A delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/51/7b...93be976d15.jpg

Another delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/51/7b...93be976d15.jpg

(Although this angle doesn't show it well, this one was made with its left wing slightly longer than its right wing, the same in the back & middle of the wings but extended farther forward at the front, to collect experimental data on both versions.)
both links the same f16
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Old 16th June 2019, 11:36 PM   #262
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Mmm, according to data I can find, it did have somewhat higher ceiling, but not that much.
According to most online sources, 35,000 feet against 20,000 feet
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Old 17th June 2019, 12:05 AM   #263
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
According to most online sources, 35,000 feet against 20,000 feet
Really? That would be very impressive for a piston-engined plane, and difficult to manage without a pressurized cabin. It would aso put it out of reach of all but rhe largest aaa guns. ... And most fighters.

I will have to check ....

Hans
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Old 17th June 2019, 01:15 AM   #264
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You’re not thinking of the B-29 Superfortress are you? That was definitely capable of operating over 30,000 feet up. B-17 I’m not so sure.
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Old 17th June 2019, 01:57 AM   #265
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B-17 service ceiling was 36,000 ft. B-29 was only 32,000 ft


Fighters like the Me109 (40,000 ft) and Fw190 (37,000) could reach them easily.
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Old 17th June 2019, 03:16 AM   #266
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Although I recall there was a version that used two auxiliary jet engines installed in the rear of the outer engine nacelles (one in each) to assist during take-off.
The Mk3 with tricycle undercarriage.
It was heavier than the previous versions with improved crew rest area and soundproofing among other things.
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Old 17th June 2019, 03:18 AM   #267
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Really? That would be very impressive for a piston-engined plane, and difficult to manage without a pressurized cabin. It would aso put it out of reach of all but rhe largest aaa guns. ... And most fighters.

I will have to check ....

Hans
You don't need a pressurised cockpit or cabin when you are using oxygen masks.
You do need electrically heated pants though.

First operational use in Europe was by the RAF in a raid on Wilhelmshaven, they bombed from 30,000 ft.

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Old 17th June 2019, 04:22 AM   #268
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I have heard and read people disparaging the Lancaster as compared with the B-17 due to the former's comparatively low operational ceiling, but its important keep in mind that these two aircraft were designed for (and carried out) different roles.

The B-17 was designed fly at a high altitude and to indiscriminately shower their targets crap-loads of bombs. It carried out that role very well, but during WWII at least, that is pretty much all it ever did.

However, the Lancaster was designed as a medium to low altitude precision bomber, to strike difficult to hit targets both in daylight and at night. It was used in the precision raid on Peenemunde (Rocket Island), the German experimental weapons facility which produced the V1 and V2. It was also very versatile; modified to carry Barnes-Wallace's "bouncing bombs" in the famous Dambusters raid on the Ruhr Valley dams, a mission that required it to carry out its bombing runs at 60ft!!!

The Lancaster's long, single bomb bay was also ideal for carrying the giant "earthquake bombs" Tallboy and Grand Slam. They used the former to good effect when they sunk the German Battleship Tirpitz in 1944. Yet when called upon, it was still able to do a similar role to the B-17 when it took part in the strategic bombing offensive, such as the massed attacks on Hamburg in 1943 and Dresden in 1945

The Lancaster was RAF's premier strike aircraft from 1942-45.
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Old 17th June 2019, 04:27 AM   #269
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
Some fun oddballs for anybody who likes fighters with delta wings & canards...

An F-15 with canards:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DUCZPzzUMAAWgiG.jpg

(Notice it also had flat horizontal paddles for its engine nozzles, like F-22's thrust vectoring system. This thing actually had those nozzles and more conventional-looking round nozzles at two different times, for experiments on two different thrust vectoring systems together with the canards.)

An F-4 with canards:
https://i.redd.it/gepjojlmz8p11.jpg

Weird how they just stuck canards on planes that already had tail fins but didn't build one with only the canards and no tail fins, which ended up as the standard way to do canards

A delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/51/7b...93be976d15.jpg

Another delta-winged F-16:
https://i.pinimg.com/474x/e7/ca/a6/e...763ba59244.jpg

(Although this angle doesn't show it well, this one was made with its left wing slightly longer than its right wing, the same in the back & middle of the wings but extended farther forward at the front, to collect experimental data on both versions.)
https://i.pinimg.com/474x/e7/ca/a6/e...763ba59244.jpg
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Old 17th June 2019, 06:32 AM   #270
theprestige
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I love those prototype planes where they take an established airframe and stick alternative stuff on it.
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Old 17th June 2019, 06:32 AM   #271
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
I'm going to mention the Boeing X-37 here, because remarkably few people are aware of its existence:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_X-37
One of the Boeing hangars (a former Orbiter Processing Facility) at Launch Complex 39 is proudly emblazoned “Home of the X-37B”, so at least the tourists on the KSC visitor buses have been apprised of its existence
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Old 17th June 2019, 06:57 AM   #272
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The X-37B is one of my favorite research planes. It's a spaceplane, it's automated, and its core capability is something truly new and useful.

I think the ability to expose satellite components to space conditions for extended periods, and then bring them back for study, is a game changer. It's significant that the USAF has invested in this program. It's significant that nobody else is getting this kind of data yet.
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Old 17th June 2019, 02:11 PM   #273
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
I have heard and read people disparaging the Lancaster as compared with the B-17 due to the former's comparatively low operational ceiling, but its important keep in mind that these two aircraft were designed for (and carried out) different roles.

The B-17 was designed fly at a high altitude and to indiscriminately shower their targets crap-loads of bombs. It carried out that role very well, but during WWII at least, that is pretty much all it ever did.

However, the Lancaster was designed as a medium to low altitude precision bomber, to strike difficult to hit targets both in daylight and at night. It was used in the precision raid on Peenemunde (Rocket Island), the German experimental weapons facility which produced the V1 and V2. It was also very versatile; modified to carry Barnes-Wallace's "bouncing bombs" in the famous Dambusters raid on the Ruhr Valley dams, a mission that required it to carry out its bombing runs at 60ft!!!

The Lancaster's long, single bomb bay was also ideal for carrying the giant "earthquake bombs" Tallboy and Grand Slam. They used the former to good effect when they sunk the German Battleship Tirpitz in 1944. Yet when called upon, it was still able to do a similar role to the B-17 when it took part in the strategic bombing offensive, such as the massed attacks on Hamburg in 1943 and Dresden in 1945

The Lancaster was RAF's premier strike aircraft from 1942-45.
I have done some research (as in looked up the stats in my library of plane books). The long-nose FW190 could do 35000ft, and so could the B17. The BF 109, not. However there is a long way from some service ceiling and what could be achieved with a heavy load under various weather conditions. A fighter at its max altitude is not at its best performance, and intercepting and fighting bombers is not necessarily an option there.

An obvious fact is that if the B17 could have sailed in over Germany at 35000 ft, little of the flak and few of the fighters could have challenged it. And that was not exactly what happened.

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Old 17th June 2019, 02:14 PM   #274
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Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
How about the SNECMA Coloeptere?

or the Leduc 010 and 022?

sorry - no time to get links to Wiki right now...
Sounds like a skin condition.
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Old 17th June 2019, 02:24 PM   #275
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Pescara No. 3

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pescar...l_3_Helicopter

Quote:
...The model three was the first example to use control mechanisms as modern helicopters. The helicopter is based around a central shaft with counter-rotating rotors. Each rotor was doubled into a biplane arrangement with cable supports.[3] It used a cyclic stick for forward and lateral control with rotor warping, and wheel for yaw anti-torque control.[4] The main rotor shaft was able to tilt slightly for forward control.[5] The rotors were also capable of autorotation in case of engine failure.[6]
This is the No. 2 (I think)

YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the ISF. The ISF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE


It's good that he was able to keep his hat on and I think the roll cage was also a good safety feature.
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Old 17th June 2019, 02:30 PM   #276
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
The U2 got a major electronics upgrade in 2012.

Here's the U2 spotters guide to some of it many configurations

https://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/a-...any-1539282603

Only two aircraft that I know of are older than the U2 (Aug 1955) and still in current US military service, the C-130 (Aug 1954) and the B-52 (Feb 1955).
Since you mention the 130, the Spectre incarnation is such a piece of OMFG material.

Have a doco about it's development. It is awesome. Yet little known for some reason.

Part 1 of 3
https://www.military.com/video/aircr.../1017289907001
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Old 18th June 2019, 11:37 AM   #277
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Really? That would be very impressive for a piston-engined plane,
Not really.

Sptifire Vb: 36,000 feet
Sptifire IX: 40,000 feet
Bf109G: 39,000 feet
Mosquito B XVI: 37,000 feet
B24 J: 28,000 feet
B29: 31,000 feet
FW190: 37,000 feet

Quote:
and difficult to manage without a pressurized cabin. It would aso put it out of reach of all but rhe largest aaa guns. ... And most fighters.
Not most German single seater day fighters. Had they operated at night, it's fair to say they would have been close to untouchable at that altitude, much like the Mosquito, although the Mosquito also had the advantage of being considerably faster than German night fighters.
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Old 18th June 2019, 12:10 PM   #278
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
I have heard and read people disparaging the Lancaster as compared with the B-17 due to the former's comparatively low operational ceiling, but its important keep in mind that these two aircraft were designed for (and carried out) different roles.
This is not true. Both aircraft are long range strategic bombers. They were both designed for the same role.

Quote:
The B-17 was designed fly at a high altitude and to indiscriminately shower their targets crap-loads of bombs. It carried out that role very well, but during WWII at least, that is pretty much all it ever did.
Nope. The B17 was certainly designed for high altitude attacks but it was thought that the Norden bombsight would allow them to carry out such attacks with a certain amount of precision. As with many military plans, contact with reality put paid to that idea.

Quote:
However, the Lancaster was designed as a medium to low altitude precision bomber, to strike difficult to hit targets both in daylight and at night. It was used in the precision raid on Peenemunde (Rocket Island), the German experimental weapons facility which produced the V1 and V2. It was also very versatile; modified to carry Barnes-Wallace's "bouncing bombs" in the famous Dambusters raid on the Ruhr Valley dams, a mission that required it to carry out its bombing runs at 60ft!!!
It wasn't designed for those raids you mentioned, it was modified for them, and then only the best crews were ever used in those raids.

The Lancaster was always designed as a strategic bomber i.e. an aircraft capable of delivering a large bomb load to targets inside enemy territory. When used in daylight, it proved to be too vulnerable as did the early B17s. The USAAC tried to solve the problem by putting loads of guns on the bomber and the RAF tried to solve the problem by flying at night. The former strategy was a failure because you could never put enough guns on a bomber and keep a reasonable bomb load. The latter strategy was a failure because the crews could not find the target. However, in both cases, technology eventually turned things around, to the detriment of the German people.
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Old 18th June 2019, 01:12 PM   #279
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Perhaps this should be in a different thread.

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Old 18th June 2019, 01:14 PM   #280
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Perhaps this should be in a different thread.

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