WWI AIR COMBAT – WHAT IT CAME DOWN TO

What is more natural than looking back over major aviation innovations of the Great War today, the anniversary of the Armistice? Here is a very interesting video posted by the BBC on how the fighter pilots dealt with reconnaissance, bombing missions and dogfight techniques. Primitive flight controls are well explained as is the interest of performing missions with a triplane aircraft – three sets of wings are necessarily more narrow, providing the pilot with a better visual field.

From the flimsy Blériot XI to Sopwiths and Fokkers, the first aces developed early methods that are always taught in fighter schools even though beyond-visual-range air combat has taken over since. Major Charles Tricornot de Rose was considered by many as the father of air fighting as early as 1914. Then as shown in this video, the German ace Oswald Boelcke laid out a first set of rules for dogfighting called the Dicta Boelcke. Pilots’ life expectancy was not measured in years but in weeks.

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BONHOMME TAKES ADVANTAGE IN RED BULL AIR RACE

Monday, Sep 28, 2015 – The British pilot Paul Bonhomme won Fort Worth at Texas Motor Speedway yesterday. He is now on his way to the final victory in Master Class (RBAR World Championship). Only the Australian Matt Hall – eight points behind him – might win the Red Bull Air Race. The French Nicolas Ivanoff had won Fort Worth race last year but he he has come in ninth position this year.

Click on: FORT WORTH RED BULL AIR RACE VIDEO

If the die seems to be cast in Master Class, it is still rolling for the other championship: The top ranking is very tight in Challenger Class as the French Mickael Brageot, the Czech Petr Kopfstein, and the Swedish Daniel Ryfa all have a 28-point total. Just behind, Cristian Bolton, the Chilean pilot comes with 24 points. Only one of them will be allowed to go through to the Master Class next year. The next and last race promises to be a hard fought final in Las Vegas on October 17th & 18th, 2015.

Here is a video that explains very well the Texan track which was flown yesterday.

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GREETINGS from C-5 AIRCRAFT, SHAKESPEARE, AND… CHUCK NORRIS

Hi there!

Dear readers, it’s high time I sent season’s greetings, and a happy new year to you through this video:

In this amusing video, a voice-over quotes Hamlet, act 1, scene 1:

Some say that ever ‘gainst that season comes
Wherein our Saviour’s birth is celebrated,
The bird of dawning singeth all night long;
And then, they say, no spirit can walk abroad,
The nights are wholesome, then no planets strike;
No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallowed and so gracious is the time.

Then, the voice-over adds:

So, I brought you that… Merry, merry Christmas, and happy new year to you all.

The voice-over quotes Marcellus’s cue from the original version of Hamlet:

It faded on the crowing of the cock.
Some say that ever ‘gainst that season comes
Wherein our Saviour’s birth is celebrated,
The bird of dawning singeth all night long.
And then, they say, no spirit dare stir abroad.
The nights are wholesome. Then no planets strike,
No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallowed and so gracious is that time.

…, which roughly means:

It faded away when the rooster crowed. Some people say that just before Christmas the rooster crows all night long, so that no ghost dares to go wandering, and the night is safe. The planets have no sway over us, fairies’ spells do not work, and witches cannot bewitch us. That is how holy that night is.

Here below a translation from François Maguin’s bilingual book in both old English, and French:

Il a disparu au chant du coq.
On dit que toujours, lorsque vient la saison
Où l’on célèbre la naissance de Notre Sauveur,
L’oiseau de l’aube chante toute la nuit.
Alors, dit-on, nul esprit ne se risque à sortir,
Les nuits s’en trouvent pures, nulle planète ne frappe,
Pas de fée ni de sorcière qui puisse jeter un sort,
Tant la grâce vient sanctifier ce temps.

Video from Valentin Bajkov © Delov Digital, www.delovdigital.hu

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Iranian Su-25 Fighterjets Shot at U.S. Drone

BREAKING NEWS :

Thursday November 8, 2012 – Two Iranian Sukhoi Su-25s (Su-25K Frogfoot-A? or Su-25UBK Frogfoot-B?) would have fired at a U.S. drone last week on November 1, at 04.50 am (Eastern Time) as it was flying above international waters – 16 miles off the Kuwaiti coast, according to the Pentagon.

The General Atomics MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) was not above Iranian territory when it was intercepted by Frogfoots which engaged the drone. However, the Predator was not shot down, and returned to its base.

George E. Little, Press secretary of the U.S. DoD (Department of Defense) stated: « We have a wide range of options from diplomatic to military. »

Reminder: an American RQ-170 Sentinel UAV had been captured in Iran on December 13, 2011.

VIDEO:

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CHINESE J-31 STEALTH FIGHTER AIRCRAFT

The brand new 5th-generation fighterjet Shenyang J-31 – or F60, which would be nicknamed Gyrfalcon – took off on October 31, 2012. She thus performed a test flight – probably her maiden flight – on Wednesday.

This futuristic PLAAF (People’s Liberation Army Air Force) stealth multirole jetfighter looks like an F-35 Lightning II though the Gyrfalcon (or Falcon Eagle?) turns out to be a twin-engine a/c. She would be more maneuverable but smaller than the latest Chengdu J-20 Black Eagle stealth fighter. Her radar cross section (RCS) might be very small, and stealthier than recent 5th-generation fighter aircraft as the radome mounting looks as if it were – like the rest of the airframe – designed with reentrant shapes.

This fighter aircraft would not exceed Mach 2, and she features a DSI (Diverterless Supersonic Inlet) so that the airspeed can be reduced while entering the air intake, thus preventing the engine from breaking up.

Here are a few pictures, and videos:

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