History RealLife / CoolPlane

8th Feb '16 5:11:15 AM Morgenthaler
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Despite all of the bickering, the first truly cool planes were the '''Wright Flyer II''' of 1904 and the '''Wright Flyer III''' of 1905, which were, respectively, the first aircraft capable of turning around and coming back to it's starting point and the first aircraft capable of truly sustained flight at a time when their European competitors (including Santos-Dumont, who had moved to France) were largely limited to short straight-line hops. Their first production machine, the '''Wright Model A''' stunned onlookers with sustained flights of up to an hour when demonstrated at LeMans in 1908 at a time when few flights lasted more than a minute. Unfortunately, after these successes the Wrights forsook further innovation in favor of defending their existing patents, which stifled innovation and resulted in the World aviation industry quickly leaving both the Wrights and the US aviation industry far behind. Ironically, the Curtiss/Wright patent battles became so heated and entangled that they could ultimately be resolved only by merging the two companies.
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Despite all of the bickering, the first truly cool planes were the '''Wright Flyer II''' of 1904 and the '''Wright Flyer III''' of 1905, which were, respectively, the first aircraft capable of turning around and coming back to it's starting point and the first aircraft capable of truly sustained flight at a time when their European competitors (including Santos-Dumont, who had moved to France) were largely limited to short straight-line hops. Their first production machine, the '''Wright Model A''' stunned onlookers with sustained flights of up to an hour when demonstrated at LeMans Le Mans in 1908 at a time when few flights lasted more than a minute. Unfortunately, after these successes the Wrights forsook further innovation in favor of defending their existing patents, which stifled innovation and resulted in the World aviation industry quickly leaving both the Wrights and the US aviation industry far behind. Ironically, the Curtiss/Wright patent battles became so heated and entangled that they could ultimately be resolved only by merging the two companies.
4th Feb '16 8:13:27 PM Kuchinawa
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30th Jan '16 1:46:52 AM Nohbody
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first person and Word Cruft removed
The skill and cleverness of the Warthog pilots has done much to overcome the limitations of the avionics. For instance, they had no IR sensors in Gulf War I, which should have made them useless at night or in smoke or cloud. The pilots realized that they got a repeater image from the heat-seeker on the Maverick missile on a tiny screen in the cockpit, and used ''that'' as an IR imaging system. Turns out you don't actually have to ''fire'' the missile for its IR sensor to relay images back to the plane. It had a miniscule field of view, but it was enough to get the job done. Perhaps the most notable example of both the Warthog's insane ruggedness and pilot skill is [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/index.cgi?id=270670618011 Captain Kim Campbell, USAF]]. Yes, that link goes to Website/BadassOfTheWeek (as does [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/warthog.html this one on the plane itself]]), because if flying home a heavily flak-damaged A-10 with nothing but the full-manual controls, pulling off the world's first successful A-10 fully-manual landing in the process, isn't the mark of a motherfucking ''{{Badass}}'', I don't know what is.
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The skill and cleverness of the Warthog pilots has done much to overcome the limitations of the avionics. For instance, they had no IR sensors in Gulf War I, which should have made them useless at night or in smoke or cloud. The pilots realized that they got a repeater image from the heat-seeker on the Maverick missile on a tiny screen in the cockpit, and used ''that'' as an IR imaging system. Turns out you don't actually have to ''fire'' the missile for its IR sensor to relay images back to the plane. It had a miniscule field of view, but it was enough to get the job done. Perhaps the most notable example of both the Warthog's insane ruggedness and pilot skill is [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/index.cgi?id=270670618011 Captain Kim Campbell, USAF]]. Yes, that link goes to Website/BadassOfTheWeek (as does [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/warthog.html this one on the plane itself]]), because if flying USAF,]] who flew home a heavily flak-damaged A-10 with nothing but the full-manual controls, pulling off the world's first successful A-10 fully-manual landing in the process, isn't the mark of a motherfucking ''{{Badass}}'', I don't know what is. process.
29th Jan '16 9:05:38 AM Thunderchin
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The skill and cleverness of the Warthog pilots has done much to overcome the limitations of the avionics. For instance, they had no IR sensors in Gulf War I, which should have made them useless at night or in smoke or cloud. The pilots realized that they got a repeater image from the heat-seeker on the Maverick missile on a tiny screen in the cockpit, and used ''that'' as an IR imaging system. Turns out you don't actually have to ''fire'' the missile for its IR sensor to relay images back to the plane. It had a miniscule field of view, but it was enough to get the job done.
to:
The skill and cleverness of the Warthog pilots has done much to overcome the limitations of the avionics. For instance, they had no IR sensors in Gulf War I, which should have made them useless at night or in smoke or cloud. The pilots realized that they got a repeater image from the heat-seeker on the Maverick missile on a tiny screen in the cockpit, and used ''that'' as an IR imaging system. Turns out you don't actually have to ''fire'' the missile for its IR sensor to relay images back to the plane. It had a miniscule field of view, but it was enough to get the job done. Perhaps the most notable example of both the Warthog's insane ruggedness and pilot skill is [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/index.cgi?id=270670618011 Captain Kim Campbell, USAF]]. Yes, that link goes to Website/BadassOfTheWeek (as does [[http://www.badassoftheweek.com/warthog.html this one on the plane itself]]), because if flying home a heavily flak-damaged A-10 with nothing but the full-manual controls, pulling off the world's first successful A-10 fully-manual landing in the process, isn't the mark of a motherfucking ''{{Badass}}'', I don't know what is.
28th Jan '16 4:27:10 PM Jake18
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28th Jan '16 4:24:08 PM Jake18
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23rd Jan '16 10:13:12 PM StevieC
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23rd Jan '16 12:12:03 AM SSJMagus
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23rd Jan '16 12:09:23 AM SSJMagus
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Special mention must go to the F-20 Tigershark, a later development of the F-5 that replaced the formers small twin engines with a more powerful single engine. Then Brigadier Gen. Chuck Yeager, the first man to break the speed of sound called the F-20 as "the finest fighter". The Tigershark was, much like the F-5 before it, meant to be sold to allies of the United States. However, it lost out to the F-16 due to the fact that the latter was already being produced in greater numbers, despite being more expensive.\\
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Special mention must go to the F-20 Tigershark, a later development of the F-5 that replaced the formers small twin engines with a more powerful single engine. Then Brigadier Gen. Chuck Yeager, the first man to break the speed of sound called the F-20 as "the finest fighter". The Tigershark was, much like the F-5 before it, meant to be sold to allies of the United States. However, it lost out to the F-16 due to the fact that the latter was already being produced in greater numbers, despite being more expensive. There have been accusations that General Dynamics sold F-16s at a loss in some cases (in collusion with the Air Force, which didn't appreciate that a capable fighter was developed completely without their input) to prevent the Tigershark from finding buyers, particularly a sale to the US Navy for "adversary" purposes[[note]]That is, simulating Russian-made jets in air combat training[[/note]] which the F-20 was almost universally agreed to be more suited to.\\

The Viggen was also (like the later Gripen) capable of taking off or landing on roads. During the Cold War, the wartime airbases in Sweden were mostly stretches of highway with some improvements. The master plan was to scatter the military aircraft all over the country when warclouds were seen approaching, so it would be hard for the enemy to do a Pearl Harbor-style decapitation strike. It could also be rearmed and refueled in ten minutes by seven people, six of them conscripts. The Viggen is so cool, the ''Riksdag'' decided to pursue accelerated development of the Viggen instead of completing the [[TheRestOfTheNuclearClub Swedish nuclear weapons program]]. The world is probably much better off for that.\\
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The Viggen was also (like the later Gripen) capable of taking off or landing on roads. During the Cold War, the wartime airbases in Sweden were mostly stretches of highway with some improvements. The master plan was to scatter the military aircraft all over the country when warclouds were seen approaching, so it would be hard for the enemy to do a Pearl Harbor-style decapitation strike. It could also be rearmed and refueled in ten minutes by seven people, six of them conscripts. The Viggen is so cool, the ''Riksdag'' decided to pursue accelerated development of the Viggen instead of completing the [[TheRestOfTheNuclearClub Swedish nuclear weapons program]]. The It wasn't a hard decision, and the world is probably much better off for that.\\

* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-8_Crusader F-8 Crusader]]''', nicknamed "The Last Gunfighter" for being the final US design to use 20mm cannon as its main weapons. Its derivative [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XF8U-3_Crusader_III the XF8-U3 Crusader III]][[note]]The [=F8U=]-2 (or F-8C when the 1962 Tri-Service Designation System was adopted) was nicknamed "Crusader II" because it was such a substantial improvement over the original [=F8U=]-1 (F-8A) and [=F8U=]-1E (F-8B), and despite that nickname never being official it resulted in the [=XF8U=]-3 being officially named "Crusader III".[[/note]], which was theoretically capable of ''Mach 2.9'' and practically capable of Mach 2.6. The [=XF8U=]-3 was able to fly rings around the much heavier Phantom, but the US Navy decided not to purchase it because its maneuverability was judged less useful in the age of radar-guided missiles, and because operating the primitive Sparrow missiles of the time (which required the firing aircraft's radar to be pointed at the target for the full length of its flight) was much easier in the two-seat F-4 Phantom. Then the UsefulNotes/VietnamWar rolled around, and it turned out that that the NVAF [=MiG=]-17's and [=MiG=]-21's ability to outturn American fighters gave them a huge edge in air-to-air combat. Cue collective FacePalm by Crusader fans. The five [=XF8U=]-3 prototypes were then provided to NASA, which used them for atmospheric testing due to their ability to reach extremely high altitudes. The NASA pilots also engaged in unauthorized mock dogfights with Navy F-4 Phantoms, which the Crusaders invariably won. Until the Navy brass, no doubt embarrassed by their own top fighter getting trounced by the one they rejected, complained to NASA and forced an end to this practice. Still, the name "The Last Gunfighter" became an appreciated misnomer. The whole exercise convinced the military that guns still had a place in dogfights: not as the primary weapon, but for those up close and personal times when missiles weren't preferred. The F-4's were retrofitted with gun pods which improved over time, and all fighter aircraft since keep room for a cannon on board.
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-8_Crusader F-8 Crusader]]''', nicknamed "The Last Gunfighter" for being the final US design to use 20mm cannon as its main weapons. Its derivative [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XF8U-3_Crusader_III the XF8-U3 Crusader III]][[note]]The [=F8U=]-2 (or F-8C when the 1962 Tri-Service Designation System was adopted) was nicknamed "Crusader II" because it was such a substantial improvement over the original [=F8U=]-1 (F-8A) and [=F8U=]-1E (F-8B), and despite that nickname never being official it resulted in the [=XF8U=]-3 being officially named "Crusader III".[[/note]], which was theoretically capable of ''Mach 2.9'' and practically capable of Mach 2.6. The [=XF8U=]-3 was able to fly rings around the much heavier Phantom, but the US Navy decided not to purchase it because its maneuverability was judged less useful in the age of radar-guided missiles, and because operating the primitive Sparrow missiles of the time (which required the firing aircraft's radar to be pointed at the target for the full length of its flight) was much easier in the two-seat F-4 Phantom. Then the UsefulNotes/VietnamWar rolled around, and it turned out that that the NVAF [=MiG=]-17's and [=MiG=]-21's ability to outturn American fighters gave them a huge edge in air-to-air combat.combat, and the Sparrow missile turned out to be many years away from being ready for prime time. Cue collective FacePalm by Crusader fans. The five [=XF8U=]-3 prototypes were then provided to NASA, which used them for atmospheric testing due to their ability to reach extremely high altitudes. The NASA pilots also engaged in unauthorized mock dogfights with Navy F-4 Phantoms, which the Crusaders invariably won. Until the Navy brass, no doubt embarrassed by their own top fighter getting trounced by the one they rejected, complained to NASA and forced an end to this practice. Still, the name "The Last Gunfighter" became an appreciated misnomer. The whole exercise convinced the military that guns still had a place in dogfights: not as the primary weapon, but for those up close and personal times when missiles weren't preferred. The F-4's were retrofitted with gun pods which improved over time, and all fighter aircraft since keep room for a cannon on board.
14th Jan '16 8:20:10 PM bombadil211
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SR-71 SR-71 Blackbird]]''' is a plane so advanced it set the still-unbroken world record for flight speed of a manned jet aircraft on its ''retirement'' flight. Even at an age of nearly 50 years, its looks can only be described as "hardcore futuristic". Unlike its nearest rival (and sometimes adversary) the [=MiG=]-25, it could maintain its high speeds for hours on end. To give an idea of how fast this thing was, standard evasive action upon detection of surface-to-air missiles (which were fired at it in Vietnam) was to simply ''accelerate''. On the same note, the maximum speed of the aircraft is based on the airframe, NOT the engines. At speeds at which the rest of the airframe would fall apart due to heat and drag, the engines would STILL be trying to accelerate the plane even faster. The plane could manage Mach 3.35 in sustained flight, anything above and the airframe would begin to heat to the point of cracking itself. Even in normal flight, it expanded (due to heat) lengthening itself by more than 1ft. It was not limited by engine power, the memoirs of veteran SR-71 pilot Major Brian Shul told having hit Mach 3.6 at 80,000ft '''for short time''' twice: during training in 1983 over Arizona and later in April 1986, over Libya. (Obviously, at Mach 3.6, "short time" has different meaning, one minute is enough to fly 100kms.)\\
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SR-71 SR-71 Blackbird]]''' is a plane so advanced it set the still-unbroken world record for flight speed of a manned jet aircraft on its ''retirement'' flight. Even at an age of nearly 50 years, its looks can only be described as "hardcore futuristic". Unlike its nearest rival (and sometimes adversary) the [=MiG=]-25, it could maintain its high speeds for hours on end. To give an idea of how fast this thing was, standard evasive action upon detection of surface-to-air missiles (which were fired at it in Vietnam) was to simply ''accelerate''. On the same note, the maximum speed of the aircraft is based on the airframe, NOT the engines. At speeds at which the rest of the airframe would fall apart due to heat and drag, the engines would STILL be trying to accelerate the plane even faster. The plane could manage Mach 3.35 in sustained flight, anything above and the airframe would begin to heat to the point of cracking itself. Even in normal flight, it expanded (due to heat) lengthening itself by more than 1ft. It was not limited by engine power, the memoirs of veteran SR-71 pilot Major Brian Shul told having hit Mach 3.6 at 80,000ft '''for short time''' twice: during training in 1983 over Arizona and later in April 1986, over Libya. (Obviously, at Mach 3.6, "short time" has different meaning, one minute is enough to fly 100kms.)\\\\

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SR-71 SR-71 Blackbird]]''' is a During flight, the airframe would experience so much heat from air friction that the plane so advanced it set the still-unbroken world record for flight speed of a manned jet aircraft on its ''retirement'' flight. Even at an age of nearly 50 years, its looks can only be described as "hardcore futuristic". Unlike its nearest rival (and sometimes adversary) the [=MiG=]-25, it could maintain its high speeds for hours on end. To give an idea of how fast this thing was, standard evasive action upon detection of surface-to-air missiles (which were fired at it in Vietnam) lengthen itself by more than a foot. This was taken into account in the design. On the ground, the plane would leak fluids through gaps caused by overlapping skin panels but, once at altitude and speed, the surface area would stretch itself out and seal the plane tight. Back on the ground, crews would have to simply ''accelerate''.[[PercussiveMaintenance physically pound the plane back to pre-takeoff length]]. On the same note, the maximum speed of the aircraft is based on the airframe, NOT the engines. At speeds at which the rest of the airframe would fall apart due to heat and drag, the engines would STILL be trying to accelerate the plane even faster. The plane could manage Mach 3.35 in sustained flight, anything above and the airframe would begin to heat to the point of cracking itself. Even in normal flight, it expanded (due to heat) lengthening itself by more than 1ft. It was not limited by engine power, the The memoirs of veteran SR-71 pilot Major Brian Shul told having hit Mach 3.6 at 80,000ft '''for short time''' twice: during training in 1983 over Arizona and later in April 1986, over Libya. (Obviously, at Mach 3.6, "short time" has different meaning, one minute is enough to fly 100kms.)\\)\\ \\
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