Sunday, July 26, 2009

Reunion Planning Post #1


Friday-Sunday, MAY 7-9, 2010

Dover, DE

Start your planning engines NOW!
Only 40 weeks and counting!

To the next C-133 Crew Reunion!!!!!!

This is when and where most of you told us you wanted it in our survey last winter. Thank you for your great response! We have an active Planning Committee engaged (members listed below). They've had a couple meetings already, and will meet again on August 4th to further consider your wishes and enjoyment. So look for more information in mid-August. Tell anyone you know who may have an interest, and may not be on our e-mail address list.

They've already booked space at Dover Downs Hotel & Casino for the main feature, the Saturday night banquet. Click on the following red link for the Dover Downs website:

Our thanks to the Planning Committee for their commitment to making this the best one ever! We'll see you there!

Charlie Aylward
Vito DiFronzo
Gerry Foss
George McDuffie
Jimmy Nolan
Larry Phillips
Sandy Sandstrom
Jay Schmuckler
Dick Strouse

Dick Hanson & Rick Spencer, Communications Committee
cell ph: 651-249-9541

November Book of the Month Update

Again, our Reviewer, Rick Spencer, adds the following relevant Comment:

"The July 25, 2009, edition of the WSJ has an article titled "The Class of Generals". The West Point class of 1976 produced the generals running the nation's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as their key deputies. All told, 33 active and retired Generals were among its 855 graduates. Even though the class of 1915 is known as 'the class the stars fell upon' there is an argument that the class of 1976 is becoming just as influential. Maybe, there is a president among them! The article is well worth reading for its human interest as well as it being the first modern generation of officers to enter the Army without serving in Vietnam." Rick Spencer Comment

His original Review in November, 2008, was:
Eisenhower: A Soldier's Life

Friday, July 24, 2009

June Book of the Month Update

Our Reviewer, Rick Spencer, offers the following update relevant to his June Book of the Month, The Shameful Peace:

"I have just finished watching the adaption of Olivia Manning's fictional trilogy of British expatriates during WWII. Her writings are considered the best fictional history about this period of the War and the story line ranges from Romania to Egypt. Manning's writings are based upon her own experiences and begin in 1940 as the Germans were marching freely to their belated victories. The adaption was done by BBC and released in 1987 titled "Fortunes of War" (available on Netflix). I highly recommend it." Rick Spencer Comment

Click on the following link for a Wikipedia review of the video:
Fortunes of War (TV Series)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

KC-132 tanker/transport

Just imagine flying a turboprop transport even bigger than the C-133. Douglas had the C-132, which also had an aerial refueling role. It got as far as a full-scale mockup but the AF pulled the fiscal plug in 1957. I've written a short history of aerial refueling as context to the KC-132's role in that activity. The last section of the chapter is an alternative history, which assumes that the Air Force bought both the 50 C-133s and 150 C-132s. Of those, there were two air refueling wings, at Pope and George, and six transport wings, at Travis, Dover, McChord, McGuire. Charleston and Tinker (which also had the training squadron). My lead picture is a conceptual photo of a KC-132 from the GAFB 497th ARW, fueling two A6-A Intruders of VA-34, based on USS John F. Kennedy. The event takes place during a 1970 WestPac cruise that passed through the Fiji Islands.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Extreme Aerobatics

Up until just a few years ago airplanes physically could not do what you will see this one do. It is still hard to believe when you see this in person. This is all real and there is no trick photography. Not only is the airplane unbelievable but the pilot is also taking g-forces between about +8 and -4. That hurts.

**Buckle up, you are in for some turbulence!**

The airplane is an Edge 540 manufactured in Guthrie , Oklahoma ...... The engine is 540 cubic inches, 10.5:1 Compression ratio, has a Cold Air induction System and is fuel injected. Engine preparation done by Barrett Precision Engines. It makes 320 BHP @ 2850 RPM and weighs 385 lbs. The airplane can fly inverted until it runs out of gas. This is Kirby Chambliss flying it, also a Red Bull pilot and Captain for Southwest Airlines.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Space Shuttle Landing; Pilot's View

Subject: Space Shuttle Landing--Pilot's View / Edwards Runway (a little slow first half, but gets better on final approach)

The video attached to this file is an impressive cockpit view of the landing of a space shuttle at Edwards AFB, California to Runway 22 (southwest direction). [As many of you know, if landing in Florida is precluded, the shuttle goes to Edwards, about 90 miles NE of Los Angeles .]

The view is through the cockpit window with a HUD (Head Up Display) superimposed in front of the window. The HUD makes it possible for the astronaut to look out of the space shuttle yet have the relevant information to fly and land in the space shuttle - altitude, speed, on course or not, wings level, etc. (i.e., no need to glance down at his instruments).

The video opens with the space shuttle flying in an easterly direction in preparation to land. There is some light conversation among the crew about a cloud cover - an undercast. You will see the undercast (clouds) at the bottom of the picture with the atmosphere giving off a faint color differentiation and then the darkening shades of blue to dark space.

One crew member is backing up the flying astronaut by reminding him of the next events - important because there is little to no room for error as the space shuttle is one giant glider with no chance to add power or go around.

Just short of 3 minutes into the video one crew member gives the flying astronaut a point when he should start a right turn for the runway. At about 3:10 in the video the astronaut is told he has the 'needle' centered referring to being on course. At about 3:46 the astronaut is told he is at the 90 - referencing the point in the pattern where he is to make a final 90 degree turn to line up with the runway.

Soon after the astronaut calls, "Yeah we have the runway." Look at the upper right corner of the video to see the runway come into view. (The runway is 16,500 feet of cement - 3 miles long.)

The height above the runway makes for a steep descent by commercial airline operations - it is a 19-degree glide slope. A typical airline flies a 2.5 to 3 degree glide slope. Notice how fast the shuttle passes through altitudes and the high approach speed 200 knots..

At one point the flying astronaut makes the point that the wind is greater than anticipated and he knows that could make a difference in the remaining energy to reach the runway. He makes a short correction to a flawless landing.