History RealLife / CoolPlane

27th Jun '17 5:15:04 PM nombretomado
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curtiss_P-40_Warhawk Curtiss P-40 Warhawk]]''' (as well as her derivative models) has been denigrated by many as an obsolete airframe with poor handling characteristics, suitable only as a stopgap in the ground-attack role. However, The P-40's wartime record and the recommendations of her pilots tell a different story. Far from being a poor dogfighter, the P-40 had one of the tightest turning radii of her contemporaries at high speed. Further, the Warhawk's modular construction and 5-spar wing design meant that it was a rugged aircraft which could sustain horrific damage and be repaired easily. There is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Kittyhawkdamaged.jpg a photo]] on TheOtherWiki of a P-40 which lost a quarter of a wing from artillery shell hit and managed to return home. The Warhawk and the Kittyhawk were made famous by the American Volunteer Group, the AVG, more commonly known as the Flying Tigers, especially for their special painting of the noses like the the heads of ferocious sharks ready to chew up the enemy..

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curtiss_P-40_Warhawk Curtiss P-40 Warhawk]]''' (as well as her derivative models) has been denigrated by many as an obsolete airframe with poor handling characteristics, suitable only as a stopgap in the ground-attack role. However, The P-40's wartime record and the recommendations of her pilots tell a different story. Far from being a poor dogfighter, the P-40 had one of the tightest turning radii of her contemporaries at high speed. Further, the Warhawk's modular construction and 5-spar wing design meant that it was a rugged aircraft which could sustain horrific damage and be repaired easily. There is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Kittyhawkdamaged.jpg a photo]] on TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki of a P-40 which lost a quarter of a wing from artillery shell hit and managed to return home. The Warhawk and the Kittyhawk were made famous by the American Volunteer Group, the AVG, more commonly known as the Flying Tigers, especially for their special painting of the noses like the the heads of ferocious sharks ready to chew up the enemy..



* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McDonnell_Douglas_AV-8B_Harrier_II AV-8B Harrier II]]/[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Aerospace_Harrier_II Harrier GR5]]''' was developed jointly (sorta, see TheOtherWiki for details) by the US and UK. No matter what walk of life you come from, you've undoubtedly heard of the "Jump Jet." It can land vertically, take off inside 400 feet with a full weapons load, and take on almost anything that flies, sails, drives, or crawls. And in the USA, it's flown by Marines. ''Ooh-rah!''\\

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McDonnell_Douglas_AV-8B_Harrier_II AV-8B Harrier II]]/[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Aerospace_Harrier_II Harrier GR5]]''' was developed jointly (sorta, see TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki for details) by the US and UK. No matter what walk of life you come from, you've undoubtedly heard of the "Jump Jet." It can land vertically, take off inside 400 feet with a full weapons load, and take on almost anything that flies, sails, drives, or crawls. And in the USA, it's flown by Marines. ''Ooh-rah!''\\
27th Jun '17 5:13:38 PM nombretomado
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairchild_Republic_A-10_Thunderbolt_II A-10 Thunderbolt II]]''', aka the Warthog, is [[TheAestheticsOfTechnology ugly as hell]] and just barely capable of exceeding the speed of smell if you put it into a steep dive, but it can fly in a damaged state that would make other planes just fall and go boom, several times over. The aircraft could be smashed to hell and the pilot could be missing all four of his appendages (maybe even his head) and ''still'' complete the mission, making it back to base in time for happy hour at the O' Club. Of course, probably the biggest reason why this plane fits under this trope is the depleted-uranium [[GatlingGood GAU-8 30mm Avenger rotary cannon]] which the plane is [[{{BFG}}literally built around]] which can literally slice a tank in half and which by itself is bigger than anything short of an SUV. You've heard of the ImplacableMan? This is the Implacable Plane. The exact amount of parts it can lose and still fly (according to TheOtherWiki) include one engine, one tail, most of its fuel supply, and ''a wing.'' Basically, half the plane can drop off and you're still good. Hell, forget guns; the Hog has been known to take ''missile hits'' and keep going undeterred.\\

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairchild_Republic_A-10_Thunderbolt_II A-10 Thunderbolt II]]''', aka the Warthog, is [[TheAestheticsOfTechnology ugly as hell]] and just barely capable of exceeding the speed of smell if you put it into a steep dive, but it can fly in a damaged state that would make other planes just fall and go boom, several times over. The aircraft could be smashed to hell and the pilot could be missing all four of his appendages (maybe even his head) and ''still'' complete the mission, making it back to base in time for happy hour at the O' Club. Of course, probably the biggest reason why this plane fits under this trope is the depleted-uranium [[GatlingGood GAU-8 30mm Avenger rotary cannon]] which the plane is [[{{BFG}}literally built around]] which can literally slice a tank in half and which by itself is bigger than anything short of an SUV. You've heard of the ImplacableMan? This is the Implacable Plane. The exact amount of parts it can lose and still fly (according to TheOtherWiki) Wiki/TheOtherWiki) include one engine, one tail, most of its fuel supply, and ''a wing.'' Basically, half the plane can drop off and you're still good. Hell, forget guns; the Hog has been known to take ''missile hits'' and keep going undeterred.\\



* In the early 1980s, a US air force study found that the Air Force didn't have '''enough''' Warthogs to provide the Army with adequate close-air support (the plane's very job-description) and advised the development of another plane to fill the needed role alongside the A-10 (the Warthog had long since elapsed out of mass-production and its manufacturer gone out of business, so the equipment needed to resume production of more A-10s was gone). Famous aerospace pioneer Burt Rutan, known for kicking off the home-built airplane revolution, offered to try his hand at a military design. The result was the '''[[FunWithAcronyms ARES]]''', or '''A'''gile '''R'''esponse '''E'''ffective '''S'''upport, a low-cost plane at $1.6 million a piece (for comparison, the F-16, one of the cheapest fighter-jets of the same time-period, had a unit-cost of between $14.6 million and $18.8 million per plane) albeit an odd-looking one. In this case "odd looking" meant that the single engine's air-intake was on the left (port) side of the fuselage, and no symmetrical duplicate of it on the right (starboard). The 25mm cannon was recessed in the starboard half of the nose beneath the cockpit, so that when the gun fired, its exhaust gases would push the nose left, cancelling out the gun's recoil force trying to pull the nose to the right. This "lopsided" layout actually also did another important thing by ensuring that none of the gun-gases could be ingested by the engine's air-intake. The plane's entire control-system (not counting the engine's controls) was 100% mechanical. The asymmetric engine position required a series of ducts to keep thrust centered, with the beneficial side-effect of helping to mix the turbofan engine's core-exhaust with cooler bypass air to make it less visible to heat-seeking missiles. Further masking of the engine's infrared signature was provide by the boom-mounted twin vertical tails betwixt which the exhaust pipe was located. Its feather-light weight and forward-swept canards further contributed to its impressive agility. The bubble-canopy gave the pilot an especially clear view in all directions, and in addition to its 25mm cannon, it could carry weapons on under-wing hardpoints. TheOtherWiki has an article [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaled_Composites_ARES here]].

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* In the early 1980s, a US air force study found that the Air Force didn't have '''enough''' Warthogs to provide the Army with adequate close-air support (the plane's very job-description) and advised the development of another plane to fill the needed role alongside the A-10 (the Warthog had long since elapsed out of mass-production and its manufacturer gone out of business, so the equipment needed to resume production of more A-10s was gone). Famous aerospace pioneer Burt Rutan, known for kicking off the home-built airplane revolution, offered to try his hand at a military design. The result was the '''[[FunWithAcronyms ARES]]''', or '''A'''gile '''R'''esponse '''E'''ffective '''S'''upport, a low-cost plane at $1.6 million a piece (for comparison, the F-16, one of the cheapest fighter-jets of the same time-period, had a unit-cost of between $14.6 million and $18.8 million per plane) albeit an odd-looking one. In this case "odd looking" meant that the single engine's air-intake was on the left (port) side of the fuselage, and no symmetrical duplicate of it on the right (starboard). The 25mm cannon was recessed in the starboard half of the nose beneath the cockpit, so that when the gun fired, its exhaust gases would push the nose left, cancelling out the gun's recoil force trying to pull the nose to the right. This "lopsided" layout actually also did another important thing by ensuring that none of the gun-gases could be ingested by the engine's air-intake. The plane's entire control-system (not counting the engine's controls) was 100% mechanical. The asymmetric engine position required a series of ducts to keep thrust centered, with the beneficial side-effect of helping to mix the turbofan engine's core-exhaust with cooler bypass air to make it less visible to heat-seeking missiles. Further masking of the engine's infrared signature was provide by the boom-mounted twin vertical tails betwixt which the exhaust pipe was located. Its feather-light weight and forward-swept canards further contributed to its impressive agility. The bubble-canopy gave the pilot an especially clear view in all directions, and in addition to its 25mm cannon, it could carry weapons on under-wing hardpoints. TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki has an article [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaled_Composites_ARES here]].
24th Jun '17 7:19:52 AM AFP
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-4_Phantom_II F-4 Phantom II]]''' -- the "Double Ugly," to give but one nickname[[note]]Other American nicknames include "Lead Sled", "Rhino", "Snoopy", "[[EnormousEngine The Triumph of Thrust Over Aerodynamics]]", and "[[BadassBoast The Leading Distributor Of MiG Parts]], German nicknames included "Iron Pig" and "Air Defense Diesel"[[/note]]-- was operated by 10 countries other than the U.S., including the UK and West Germany. Fast, heavily armed, and shot down Soviet-built planes like no one's business. Featured in both the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy's display teams, and to this day, the only aircraft to be used by both teams simultaneously. It set the standard for all fighter jets to come after it.\\

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-4_Phantom_II F-4 Phantom II]]''' -- the "Double Ugly," to give but one nickname[[note]]Other American nicknames include "Lead Sled", "Rhino", "Snoopy", "[[EnormousEngine The Triumph of Thrust Over Aerodynamics]]", and "[[BadassBoast The Leading Distributor Of MiG Parts]], Parts]]", German nicknames included "Iron Pig" and "Air Defense Diesel"[[/note]]-- was operated by 10 countries other than the U.S., including the UK and West Germany. Fast, heavily armed, and shot down Soviet-built planes like no one's business. Featured in both the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy's display teams, and to this day, the only aircraft to be used by both teams simultaneously. It set the standard for all fighter jets to come after it.\\
24th Jun '17 7:19:26 AM AFP
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-4_Phantom_II F-4 Phantom II]]''' -- the "Double Ugly," to give but one nickname -- was operated by 10 countries other than the U.S., including the UK and West Germany. Fast, heavily armed, and shot down Soviet-built planes like no one's business. Featured in both the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy's display teams, and to this day, the only aircraft to be used by both teams simultaneously. It set the standard for all fighter jets to come after it.\\

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-4_Phantom_II F-4 Phantom II]]''' -- the "Double Ugly," to give but one nickname -- nickname[[note]]Other American nicknames include "Lead Sled", "Rhino", "Snoopy", "[[EnormousEngine The Triumph of Thrust Over Aerodynamics]]", and "[[BadassBoast The Leading Distributor Of MiG Parts]], German nicknames included "Iron Pig" and "Air Defense Diesel"[[/note]]-- was operated by 10 countries other than the U.S., including the UK and West Germany. Fast, heavily armed, and shot down Soviet-built planes like no one's business. Featured in both the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy's display teams, and to this day, the only aircraft to be used by both teams simultaneously. It set the standard for all fighter jets to come after it.\\
16th Jun '17 9:53:24 AM morane
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** It should be noted that the Meteor was much less advanced than the Me 262. The Me 262 used axial flow turbines (i.e. what modern gas turbines use) while the Meteor used centrifugal compressors (i.e. what a sports car might use).

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** It should be noted that the Meteor was much less advanced than the Me 262. The Me 262 used axial flow turbines (i.e. what modern gas turbines use) while the Meteor used centrifugal compressors (i.e. what a sports car might use). Justified, since axial turbines have far stricter requirements for material than centrifugal. The British wanted to have [[BoringButPractical something that works here and now]] and develop their own axial turbine only after they had won the war. The Luftwaffe, on the other hand...
5th Jun '17 12:31:04 PM JOKER_G
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* Not to be outdone and left behind, the Chinese now have the '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chengdu_J-20 Chengdu J-20]]''', a stealthy fighter under development that already completed its first flight tests. Appearance wise, it might actually be a ShoutOut to the titular aircraft in the ''Film/{{Firefox}}'' film. It also features the world's most outright pretentious name for any plane, ''Annihilator'', despite it's incredibly lacking stealth traits due to it's excess of fins, making it more of a propaganda piece than a plane.
* The Chinese also have the '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shenyang_J-31 Shengyang J-31]]''', which is basically their version of the F-35. That said, compared to the plane it tries to copy the J-31 benefits from not having to be a Jack of All Trades and is instead focused on being an effective and stealthy lightweight naval fighter.

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* Not to be outdone and left behind, the Chinese now have the '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chengdu_J-20 Chengdu J-20]]''', a stealthy fighter under development fighter. 10 prototypes and at least 6 in active service have been confirmed. On 9 March 2017, Chinese officials confirmed that already completed its first flight tests. Appearance wise, it might actually be a ShoutOut to the titular aircraft J-20 had entered service in the ''Film/{{Firefox}}'' film. It also features Chinese air force. Some people have raised doubts about the world's most outright pretentious name for any plane, ''Annihilator'', despite it's incredibly lacking stealth traits due to it's excess use of fins, making it more canards on a low-observable design, stating that canards would guarantee radar detection and a compromise of a propaganda piece than a plane.
stealth. However, canards and low-observability are not mutually exclusive designs.
* The Chinese also have the '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shenyang_J-31 Shengyang J-31]]''', which is basically their version of the F-35. That said, compared to the plane it tries to copy the J-31 benefits from not having to be a Jack of All Trades and is instead focused on being an effective and stealthy lightweight naval fighter. It seems that China air force is more interested in J-20, and only one J-31 prototype have been built.
4th Jun '17 3:39:17 PM DarkPhoenix94
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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avro_Vulcan Avro Vulcan]]''' is a bomber that looks like a fighter, and thanks to its huge wing area maneuvers much like one at high altitude, to boot. There are not many bombers you can roll at an air show. In 1982, months from retirement, it pulled off one of the longest distance bombing raids in history (Ascension Island to the Falklands), with the help of its only slightly less cool cousin, the Handley Page Victor (originally a bomber, but converted to a tanker). One has been restored to flying condition. To give an idea of the coolness of the plane, its display at the 2008 Farnborough Air Show was on the Wednesday, a trade day. The trade tents ''emptied'' when this aircraft was doing its thing. In addition to its kinked delta flying wing shape, there's the [[{{MostWonderfulSound}} NOISE]] of it. The intakes for the Bristol Olympus engines resonate at high power in certain air conditions, causing the famous [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTJOKW8qIYo Vulcan howl.]]

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* The '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avro_Vulcan Avro Vulcan]]''' is a bomber that looks like a fighter, and thanks to its huge wing area maneuvers much like one at high altitude, to boot.boot, and still looks kind of modern despite entering service way back in 1956. There are not many bombers you can roll at an air show. In 1982, months from retirement, it pulled off one of the longest distance bombing raids in history (Ascension Island to the Falklands), with the help of its only slightly less cool cousin, the Handley Page Victor (originally a bomber, but converted to a tanker). One has been restored to flying condition. To give an idea of the coolness of the plane, its display at the 2008 Farnborough Air Show was on the Wednesday, a trade day. The trade tents ''emptied'' when this aircraft was doing its thing. In addition to its kinked delta flying wing shape, there's the [[{{MostWonderfulSound}} NOISE]] of it. The intakes for the Bristol Olympus engines resonate at high power in certain air conditions, causing the famous [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTJOKW8qIYo Vulcan howl.]]



The F-35's main problem is that it's intended as the [[JackOfAllStats Jack Of All Trades]], a multi-role aircraft capable of serving multiple needs by multiple services in multiple countries, but ends up being a MasterOfNone. The Air Force has huge runways and doesn't mind a heavier dry weight. The Navy has ''small'' runways (they're on boats, after all) and needs higher thrust. The Canadians want something different entirely. See the problems? In particular, the carrier requirements of the Navy C variant meant that the A and B variants must be beefed up unnecessarily (due to the goal of commonality) to endure the harshness of carrier operations, something counter to the lightweight fighter that the Air Force and Marine Corps desire.\\

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The F-35's main problem is that it's intended as the [[JackOfAllStats Jack Of All Trades]], a multi-role aircraft capable of serving multiple needs by multiple services in multiple countries, but ends up being a MasterOfNone. The Air Force has huge runways and doesn't mind a heavier dry weight. The Navy has ''small'' runways (they're on boats, after all) and needs higher thrust. The Canadians want something different entirely. And the British want a replacement for the Hawker Harrier, the 'Jump Jet'. See the problems? In particular, the carrier requirements of the Navy C variant meant that the A and B variants must be beefed up unnecessarily (due to the goal of commonality) to endure the harshness of carrier operations, something counter to the lightweight fighter that the Air Force and Marine Corps desire.\\



With the F-35 finally entering service and undergoing exercises, many of the prior criticisms are proving to be unfounded or exaggerated. Flyaway cost has been dropping precipitously, with the A model currently sitting at an expensive but not bank-breaking $95 million per plane. Test pilots have been reporting maneuverability that combines the best aspects of the F-16 and F/A-18. Oh, and it hasn't had a single fatal crash yet, something basically unheard of in fighter design.

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With the F-35 finally entering service and undergoing exercises, many of the prior criticisms are proving to be unfounded or exaggerated. Flyaway cost has been dropping precipitously, with the A model currently sitting at an expensive but not bank-breaking $95 million per plane. Test pilots have been reporting maneuverability manoeuvrability that combines the best aspects of the F-16 and F/A-18. Oh, and it hasn't had a single fatal crash yet, something basically unheard of in fighter design.
24th May '17 12:26:37 PM CV12Hornet
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** The Canberra's greatest strength was its very high flight ceiling, to the point that catching the Canberra was the gold standard for interceptors for much of the 1950s, and specifically spurred development of the F8U Crusader.

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** The Canberra's greatest strength was its very high flight ceiling, to the point that catching the Canberra was the gold standard for interceptors for much of the 1950s, and specifically spurred development of the F8U [=F8U=] Crusader.
8th May '17 12:12:50 PM CV12Hornet
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Added DiffLines:

** The Canberra's greatest strength was its very high flight ceiling, to the point that catching the Canberra was the gold standard for interceptors for much of the 1950s, and specifically spurred development of the F8U Crusader.


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** Hell, modernized variants still in service with the Indian Air Force have been able to give ''F-15s'' issues in exercises. Not bad for a fifty-year-old fighter.
8th May '17 12:02:03 PM CV12Hornet
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