Jan. 23 – 1st flight anniversary of both BLERIOT XI & TU-126

Thanks to the new Twitter technology, we can now embed some Twitter posts. A great aviation history’s tweep – @OlePrimdahl – pays tribute to both the Russian Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) Tupolev Tu-126 Moss (January 23, 1962), and the famous French Blériot XI (January 23, 1909) flown by Louis Blériot to cross the Channel for the first time ie 6 months later:

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PASSENGERS DID BELIEVE THEIR AIRCRAFT WOULD CRASH

 

Scary flight onboard British Airways BA 0206 – It happened over the Atlantic Ocean at 35,000 feet on Friday January 13, 2012 at 03.00 AM.

The passengers were given the scare of their lives by an emergency message which said that the aircraft was about to crash into the ocean, and that they have to brace themselves for impact. It just was not true, as the message was pre-taped, and was sent-out by mistake. The flight attendants dashed into the cabin to calm down the panic surging. Then, an announcement added that such warnings – if re-iterated – should be diregarded.

British Airways has apologized to the people who were onboard BA 0206 for this incident. Watch the video:

 

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FUKUSHIMA NUCLEAR ACCIDENT FALLOUT

Firefighters, as well as military personnel might be involved in a CRO (Crisis Response Operation – WARNING as this acronym has many other meanings in the military).

To whom it may concern, a short vocabulary review could be useful in case of (let’s hope you won’t deal with it) either natural disasters or a nuclear powerplant accident.

For instance:

  • « Fallout » is used in the headline above, and it means « consequences » but it also means « fallout » like in « radioactive/radiological fallout » (retombees radioactives/radiologiques)
  • NRBC (Nuclear, Radiological, Biological, and Chemical) or CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear)
  • Meltdown scenario = scenario de fusion du coeur du reacteur
  • Plume of smoke = Panache de fumee
  • Tidal wave, tsunami = Tsunami
  • Earthquake, quake = Tremblement de terre
  • Tremor = Secousse, replique
  • Shake, shaking = Secousse
  • Mud slide (prononcez [meud slaïd])/Land slide = Coulee de boue/Glissement de terrain
  • Flood/Flooding (prononcez [fleud] ou [fleuding]) = innondation
  • Fire/Arson = Incendie/Incendie criminel

…and so on. Watch, and listen carefully to this PBS News-Hour video:

  

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SAAB GRIPEN wins tender in Switzerland

11/30/2011 – The news broke today : The Swiss Air Force is to acquire 22 Sweedish SAAB GRIPEN fighter aircraft. The Swiss government had warned that they were compelled to squeeze their budget for this $3.36 billion bid as they could not afford to purchase the 33 fighter aircraft planned for the replacement of their F-5 Tiger fleet.

In spite of its outstanding performance during the tests as well as over the battlefields in Afghanistan, and in Libya, the Dassault Rafale was not chosen. Moreover, like the EADS Eurofighter/Typhoon, it was deemed too expensive for Switzerland could not buy as many aircraft within the budget allocated.

The Gripen is a good option for Switzerland since it is the cheapest one. The version to be delivered – JAS 39E/F or Gripen Demo/NG – is believed to be an excellent one – IRST (InfraRed Search and Track); ES-05 Raven AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar & SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar); Electronic Warfare (EW) systems; Helmet Mounted Sight and Display (HMSD)…

However, this new-generation Gripen NG is a single engine fighter aircraft. It was tactically outperformed by its opponents, and last but not least, it has not yet been produced. As a matter of fact, the Swiss should be involved in the R&D works.

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RAFALE likely to be turned down in UAE fighter aircraft bid

RAFALE fighter aircraft flying
RAFALE La Ferté Alais 2010 - © Xavier Cotton http://passiondesavions.blogspot.de/

According to the comments of His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the French Dassault RAFALE multirole fighter aircraft might be rejected as he was paying a visit to the 12th Dubai International Airshow.

About the Rafale deal, he said that Dassault seemed unaware that all the diplomatic and political will in the world could not overcome uncompetitive and unworkable commercial terms.

Dassault was deemed to race ahead in this $10-billion sale to the United Arab Emirates. The contest has taken a dramatic turn as EADS Eurofighter/Typhoon seems to receive a decisive momentum, and the Boeing F-15 and F-18 programmes would be back on track in this competition.

The Rafale performances in Libya were thought to have outclassed the other allied fighter aircraft, and it clearly headed above the competition indeed. However, some commercial negotiations would have failed. To be continued…

Photo courtesy: © Xavier Cotton http://passiondesavions.blogspot.de/

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