-Those Fantastic Flying Machines-


NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

Man must rise above the Earth—to the top of the atmosphere and beyond—for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives.— Socrates



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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Lockheed L-749 Constellation


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Gorgeous takeoff of 1st ANA 787

Boeing Celebrates Delivery Of Long-Awaited 787


Boeing Celebrates Delivery Of Long-Awaited 787



Sep 27, 2011





In a rain-soaked delivery ceremony Monday outside the Boeing factory’s huge hangar doors, Boeing executives were apologetic about the 787 program’s tardiness but strongly asserted the value of the technology they pursued and the global manufacturing base they used to achieve it.
Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Jim Albaugh declared the 787 “the biggest innovation in commercial aviation since the 707 was built more than 50 years ago.”
Pat Shanahan, head of all aircraft programs who was called in 2006 to right the troubled 787’s production and flight test efforts, responded to critics who charged that Boeing was pushing technology too far in seeking to build the industry’s first aircraft with single-piece composite fuselage barrels. “I’ve dreamed of this moment for a long time—actually for longer than I’d have wanted,” he said, drawing laughter from thousands of mechanics, engineers, quality control, systems and test employees gathered for the event. “As we all know, the journey here wasn’t easy or smooth, but great inventions never are.”
Proclaiming the 787 “the world’s first all-composite airplane,” Shanahan rattled off the technical feats Boeing achieved to overcome challenges, not the least of which were the aircaft's composite fuselage and wings. As he predicted, the company’s “global production system will produce at rates this industry has never seen,” —or the company—as one information technology specialist said in an aside.
Shanahan's reference is apt because the delivery ceremony hardly marks an end to Boeing’s 787 challenges. Chief among them is its ambitious goal of jumping from the current production rate of two aircraft per month to 10 by the end of 2013.
Boeing says the 787 does not rely on a greater number of suppliers than its last big program, the 777. But their role is far greater. Boeing sought major partner suppliers to tap into their expertise in structures, systems and components, and called on them to play a greater role in terms of manufacturing integration and testing. But the company reacted when tests showed the design needed to be beefed up, most notably when wing stringers required strengthening where they join the body and prompted a frustrating six-month delay just as flight testing was due to get under way. It finally started on a similarly rainy, gusty day on Dec. 15, 2009.
The 787 is the first airplane that All Nippon Airways has launched, and the carrier’s executives have enthusiastically embraced it despite waiting an additional 39 months beyond the initial May 2008 delivery date. “I cannot wait to see the day when the skies of the world are filled with 787s,” ANA President and CEO Shinichiro Ito declared.
The winged backdrops for the ceremony were test aircraft ZA002, the first in ANA’s livery and the 24th 787 produced; it will be the second delivered, in October. ANA will take delivery of the eighth aircraft produced, which was parked nearby for a party Monday evening. It is scheduled to lift off about 6:30 a.m. Tuesday for the flight to Tokyo. It will start its career in a special charter service from Tokyo Haneda Airport on Oct. 26 and enter regular services on Nov. 1 from Haneda to Hiroshima and Okayama.

Afghan Air Force Ce182s delivered through Prestwick


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Did the seat break? New theory suggests Reno crash pilot's chair may have broken moments before impact


Did the seat break? New theory suggests Reno crash pilot's chair may have broken moments before impact

Last updated at 11:26 AM on 21st September 2011
A new theory has emerged from last weeks deadly Reno air crash suggesting the pilot's seat may have become dislodged.
According to an aviation mechanic, a picture taken seconds before the plane plummeted into a crowd of spectators - killing 11 - appears to show an empty cockpit where veteran pilot 74-year-old Jimmy Leeward should be.
The news comes as more harrowing details emerged about the victims and their families involved in last Friday's tragedy.
Out cold? A P-51 Mustang airplane is shown right before crashing at the Reno Air show on Friday. The pilot is absent from the cockpit
Seat:  The  P-51 Mustang airplane is shown right before crashing at the Reno Air show on Friday. The pilot is absent from the cockpit, leading a mechanic to suggest the pilot's seat may have broke free
Lose: A mechanic, who has worked on planes similar to the P-51 Mustang (pictured) - added the seat may have slipped or become dislodged, causing the pilot to lose control
Lose: A mechanic, who has worked on planes similar to the P-51 Mustang (pictured) - added the seat may have slipped or become dislodged, causing the pilot to lose control
Speaking to Fox News, mechanic J.R. Walker said that even if Leeward had passed and slumped in his seat he would still be visible in the cockpit canopy.
The mechanic, who has worked on planes similar to the P-51 Mustang - added the seat may have slipped or become dislodged, causing the pilot to lose control.

A Nevada man who took his 12-year-old to see racing pilots was identified Tuesday as the death toll rose to 11.
Virginia Craik told The Associated Press that her son, 45-year-old John Craik, of Gardnerville, died from injuries after a WWII-era fighter plane dived into a crowd of fans Friday during the nation's premier aviation competition.
Yesterday evening the Washoe County Medical Examiner’s Office also identified James McMichael, 47, of Graham, Wash. as the 11th victim of the Reno Air Races plane crash.
Her grandson was with his dad when the plane crashed. Family members said the boy was not seriously injured and is back in school.
Nosedive: The aeroplane approaches the ground right before crashing during the air show in Reno, Nevada
Nosedive: The aeroplane approaches the ground right before crashing during the air show in Reno, Nevada
That means nine of the people killed during the air races have been identified and at least two others have not.
More than 70 people were treated for injuries, some of them life threatening, in the unexplained crash that also took the life of stunt pilot Leeward.
That dramatic injury toll was stoking fears across the nation, as relatives and friends flooded Reno officials with inquiries about the whereabouts of spectators.
Emergency officials were trying to compile a list of missing people Tuesday.

'You're responding to someone who was with a loved one at one moment and the loved one is not there the next moment,' said Kathy Jacobs, executive director of the Crisis Call Center in Reno.
'They're looking for answers, and the reality is we can't answer their questions right away.'
Leeward's Galloping Ghost Mustang fighter plane disintegrated into a cloud of dust and debris during Friday's race.
'Cause of crash': Was this missing piece of the tail, believed to be the P-51 Mustang's 'trim tab' the reason why the plane suddenly cwent out of control?
'Cause of crash': Was this missing piece of the tail, believed to be the P-51 Mustang's 'trim tab' the reason why the plane suddenly cwent out of control?
The National Championship Air Races drew thousands of people to Reno every September to watch various military and civilian planes race.
Local schools often held field trips there, and a local sports book took wagers on the outcomes.
During the races, planes flew wingtip-to-wingtip as low as 50 feet (15 meters) off the ground. The competitors follow an oval path around pylons, with distances and speeds depending on the class of aircraft. Pilots reached speeds of up to 500 mph.
Leeward, was the 20th pilot to die at the races since it began 47 years ago, but Friday's crash was the first where spectators were killed. Some of the injured described being coated in aviation fuel that burned.
Leeward and his team had modified the plane beyond recognition, taking a full 10 feet off the wingspan and cutting the ailerons - the back edges of the wings used to turn the aircraft - by roughly 28 inches.
Leeward was a veteran air racer from Ocala, Florida, who flew in Hollywood films. His father worked in aviation and taught him the trade.
He was married with two adult sons. Leeward loved speeding, on the ground or in the air, and had recently taken up racing cars.
The others killed who have been identified were Sharon Stewart, 47, of Reno; Greg Morcom, 47, of Marysville, Wash.; George Hewitt, 60, and Wendy Hewitt, 57, both of Fort Mohave, Ariz.; Michael Wogan, 22, of Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Regina Bynum, 53, of San Angelo, Texas.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2039871/Reno-air-crash-2011-Pilots-chair-broken-moments-impact.html#ixzz1YbFl1HXb

Thursday, September 01, 2011


Boeing Introduces the 737 MAX – Really?

Is this the new Boeing 737 MAX livery? Nope, but a great Photoshop by Lyle Jansma.
Is this the new Boeing 737 MAX livery? Nope, but a great Photoshop by Lyle Jansma.
There are two stories with the unveiling of the new Boeing 737 MAX: the actual aircraft (which promises greater efficiency) and the choice of the name “MAX.” When I heard about Boeing’s name for their 737 re-engine, for some odd reason, I got really thirsty and wanted a Pepsi… weird. While this story should lead with the differences of the new 737, I feel I have to talk about the new name first, since it is the most shocking.
Boeing is a smart company that makes respected aircraft. They have a history of creating legendary names:StratocruiserStratoliner, and of course Dreamliner. The name “MAX” is just not in the same category in my opinion — it seems lazy and very “been there, done that.”
There has been a lot of speculation on what Boeing might call their 737 Re-engine: the 737RE, 737-8, 737NNG. Many people have been excited to find out the new name. Reading different reactions on the internet, it appears I am not the only one who is disappointed.
According to Boeing, these next, next generation aircraft will be written as the “737 MAX 7″, “737 MAX 8″ and “737 MAX 9″ without dashes. I think I might be writing them as 737-7, 737-8, 737-9 with dashes and no “MAX.”
The 737 Next Generation was a great name. I even like Airbus’ new A320neo name to describe their more efficient aircraft to compete with the 737.
Yes, I understand the ideas behind Boeing choosing this name, but it doesn’t mean the name works. During the press conference announcing the re-engined 737, Nicole Piasecki explained why Boeing chose the MAX name. “We wanted the name to capture how exceptional the 737 is not only to in terms of its performance but we wanted it to be able to differentiate the 7, 8 and 9. We wanted to make sure the name was easily identifiable from 4-year olds up to 90-year olds and we wanted to make sure that it represented the best that it will truly be… We thought about how do you convey superiority, the best, the gold standard in single-aisle airplanes. And how do you come up with a name to describe already a great airplane. We wanted to make sure that it talked about what it was going bring to the industry in terms of maximum benefit, maximum competitive advantage for our customers, maximum value and absolute maximum in what an airplane could deliver to our customers. So we came up with something that fit that and we will be calling this airplane the 737 MAX.”
With all the creative and smart people at Boeing this is the best (er max) that they could do?
I like the new real livery of the 737 MAX, but not so sure about the name. Image from Boeing.
I like the new real livery of the 737 MAX, but not so sure about the name. Image from Boeing.
Will an airline not choose this aircraft because of the name? Of course not. They are going to care more about the performance and the bottom line.  Going with a re-engine 737 versus a whole new product makes sense. Airlines have already showed a strong demand for an updated single-aisle aircraft sooner rather than later. Going with a re-engined 737 will allow Boeing to  improve the 777 and develop additional models for the 787.
There are already496 orders for the new MAX aircraft from five airlines. Those that already have 737NG’s on order will most likely have the opportunity to change over to MAX aircraft.
Boeing states the 737 MAX will have a 16% less fuel consumption than their “competitor’s current offering” (we will assume that is the Airbus A320) and it will have 4% less than the A320neo. The new plane will use CFM International LEAP-1B engines and is expected to have its first delivery sometime in 2017.
So what are your thoughts? Do you like the 737 MAX name?