Hello, aircraft fans!
In this edition of the Plane Splash (pun intended), we will look at today’s most discussed airliner: The Boeing Model 777 (“triple seven”). I’ll share about some Lockheed P-3 Orions that were launched for a possible resolution. And I’ll even share a pretty lousy theory that the media has NOT tapped into, and probably won’t.
First off, there have been three previous crashes since its first flight in 1994, and this could be the fourth. Of course, it was a night flight, and poor vision, hijacking, terrorism, sabotage, foul play, and mental failure are all possible causes as well.
Here are a few aircraft specs about the 777.
Crew: 2 or 3
Power plant: 2 Pratt & Whitney, General Electric, or Rolls-Royce turbofan engines
Performance: Max speed: 588 mph (946 km/h); range: 4840 miles (7785km) with full cabin; service ceiling 38,697 and 43,100 ft. (11,795 and 13,135m)
Dimensions: Wingspan: 199 ft. 11 inches (60.93m); length: 209 ft. 1 in. (63.73m); height: 60 ft. 9 in (18.51m); weight: 515,000 lb. maximum take-off weight (233,604 kg).
The Boeing 777 entered service with United Airlines on June 7, 1995, and the craft has proved valuable ever since. In fact, some airlines have begun to replace their 747s with 777s. Emirates operates the largest 777 fleet, with 127 passenger and freighter aircraft as of June 2013. The airliner is rated as one of the safest aircraft based on its accident safety record and high number of flight hours. The Asiana Airlines Flight 214 accident in July 2013 was the first fatal crash of the aircraft in 18 years of commercial service.
Here is the latest news on the Orions as of March 20, 2014.
PERTH, Australia (AP) – Search planes scoured a remote patch of the Indian Ocean but came back empty-handed Friday after a 10-hour mission looking for any sign of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet, another disappointing day in one of the world’s biggest aviation mysteries.
Australian officials pledged to continue the search for two large objects spotted by a satellite earlier this week, which had raised hopes that the two-week hunt for the Boeing 777 that disappeared March 8 with 239 people on board was nearing a breakthrough.
But Australia’s acting prime minister, Warren Truss, tamped down expectations.
“Something that was floating on the sea that long ago may no longer be floating – it may have slipped to the bottom,” he said. “It’s also certain that any debris or other material would have moved a significant distance over that time, potentially hundreds of kilometers.”
On Friday, five planes, including three P-3 Orions, made the trip. While search conditions had improved from Thursday, with much better visibility, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said there were no sightings of plane debris.
On March 19, 2014, a friend of my family was driving his work route, and passed the Madras City/County airport. For those of you who do not live in the Northwest, Madras is a small town in central Oregon. As he passed, he reported seeing three Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD-80s sitting on the taxiway. 1: Madras Municipal is much too small for these planes, and 2: The airplanes had Spanair markings (meaning they were from Spain). Possibly, they meant to fly to Madrid, and ended up in Madras instead? Perhaps the 777 made the same mistake? Okay, enough of that lousy theory…
Have a great day!
Hello, aircraft fans!
In this edition of the Plane Crash, we’ll look at the U.S. Navy’s WW2 top three: the Grumman F6f Hellcat, the Vought F-4U Corsair, and the Grumman F4f Wildcat.
Wildcat: Before the greatness of aircraft like the Grumman Hellcat and Vought Corsair, the Grumman F4f Wildcat was a fine aircraft. First built in 1939, this rugged mid-wing 318-mph six machine-gun aircraft held a critical point in the U.S. Navy until better aircraft were supplied. For instance, Lieutenant Butch O’Hare destroyed five Japanese bombers in six minutes. Later, despite being shot down in the Pacific, the Chicago-O’Hare airport was named for him. The Wildcat had a crew of 1, one 895kW (1200hp) Pratt & Whitney R-1830-66 radial engine, a maximum speed of 512km/h(318mph), a range of 1239km (770 miles), and a service ceiling of 10,638m (34,900ft).
Dimensions are as follows: Wingspan: 11.58m (38ft.). Length: 8.76m (28ft. 9in.). Height: 3.61m (11ft. 10in.).
Armament: Six 12.77mm (0.50in.) machine guns in wings and an external bomb load of 91kg (200lb.). Total loaded weight was 3607 kg (7952lb.).
Hellcat: The Hellcat flew for the first time on June 26, 1942. Many of its war abilities had been learned from its predecessor, the Wildcat. Specifications for this war-changing plane are as follows:
Powerplant: one 1492 kW (2000hp) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-10W radial engine.
Performance: Maximum speed: 612 km/h (380mph). Range: 1521km (945 miles). Service ceiling: 11,369m (37,300ft.).
Dimensions: Wingspan: 13.05m (42ft10in.). Length: 10.24m(33ft.7in.). Height: 3.99m (13ft.1in.).
Armament: six 12.7mm(0.50ibn.) machine guns in wings, or two 20mm(0.79in.) cannon and four 12.7mm(0.50in) machine guns, provision for two 453kg (1000lb) bombs or six 12.7cm (5in) RPs.
Weight: 7025kg (15,487lb).
In all, the Grumman F6f ran up a 19 to 1 kill ratio.
And now: the Chance Vought F4U Corsair. The speed, strength, and firepower of the Corsair enabled it to dominate Japanese opposition, shooting down 2140 against a loss of 189. Its performance and dependability allowed great flight leaders like John Blackburn, John Smith, Marion Carl, Joe Foss, and Pappy Boyington to create legendary fighter squadrons. It was truly a superior aircraft.
Have a great day!
Hello, aircraft fans!
In this edition of the Plane Crash, you’ll find out about the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, which was one of the greatest aircraft of WWII. Get ready, because as of Super Bowl week, I’m going to be writing a football blog post. So everybody root for San Francisco, and rejoice that the Patriots won’t make it to Super Bowl XLVII. Jack Harbaugh must be pretty darn excited.
On January 20th, 1939, one of the greatest aircraft of all time, had its first test flight. The programme had begun in 1937, due to a USAAC requirement. This aircraft could go an amazing 360 M.P.H. at 20,000 feet, and 290 M.P.H. at sea level. It had a crew number of one, a maximum speed of 414 M.P.H., a range of 2,260 miles, a service ceiling of 44,000 feet, and a weight of 21,600 pounds (loaded). It had an outstanding armament of one 20mm cannon, four 12.7mm machine guns; along with a bomb and rocket load of 4,000 pounds. Despite its superiority, it has always tended to be overshadowed by Republic’s P-47 Thunderbolt and the P-51 Mustang of North American. That is mainly because both other aircraft did best in both theatres of the war, but the P-38 was mainly used in the Pacific Theatre. But there were still those pilots like Robin Olds.
The Lightning was adequately named, for it immediately set speed records. A loopy pilot Lieutenant (later Brigadier General) Benjamin S. Kelsey had logged just 7 hours in the XP-38 when he decided to try to break Howard Hughes’s transcontinental flight time record of seven hours, twenty-eight minutes, and thirty seconds. Kelsey took-off on February 11th, 1939, and the aircraft blazed across the country. But on his descent to Mitchell Army Air Field on Long Island, New York, disaster struck. After seven hours and two minutes of flight, carburetor icing took away both engine’s power, and the aerocraft crashed on a golf course. Kelsey came out splendidly, but the aircraft was damaged beyond repair. Despite the tragedy, it brought the government’s and the public’s attention to their new 414-M.P.H. fighter.
There were only a few downsides with the P-38, them being maneuverability, engine number, and the two 1063kW (1425hp) Allison V-1710-91 12-cylinder Vee-type unreliable engines. Even though the two engines were crucial to speed, descent had to be started much earlier than in most other aircraft. The Allison engines were hard to operate in cold weather, but the P-38 was still used often flying from Normandy or other Allied bases, including Andover in Hampshire, down to the Deutschland region of Europe.
Lockheed surprisingly made the only U.S. fighter that was in production before and after the war. Major Richard I. Bong, the highest-scoring pilot in U.S.A.F. history, shot down a total of 40 aircraft; while Tommy McGuire shot down 38 before being shot down over the Philippines in 1945. Also, the amazing feat of killing Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto was flown by P-38s. They flew from Guadalcanal to destroy Yamamoto’s aircraft over Kahili Atoll. Making the 1,100 round-trip was no easy feat. It was truly a WWII classic.
Have a great day!
Hello, airplane fans!
The SR-71 Blackbird was the main secret service aircraft in controlling Communism, and was greatly loved by its pilots. It was used mainly during the Cold War. Many air museums will have it, such as Evergreen, The Museum of Flight, National Air and Space Museum, and perhaps Udvar Hazy.
Maker of Aircraft: Lockheed
First Flown: 1964
Flown in Combat?: Vietnam War, Operation Eldorado Canyon, Cold War
Maximum Speed: 2000 m.p.h.
Range: 2,983 miles
Service Ceiling: 80,000 feet
Dimensions: Wingspan 55 feet 7 inches, wing area 1,605 square feet, length 107 feet 5 inches, height 18 feet 6 inches.
Used in Countries: USA, Okinawa, UK
Designated the RS-71 Blackbird, it was called the SR-71 Blackbird after President Lyndon B. Johnson accidentally called it the wrong thing. The aircraft is still often remembered as the main spyplane that helped the U.S. defeat the Soviet Union.
Forty-eight years have passed since it was first flown, and most are still in tip-top shape, despite being retired. Now, the main aircraft patrolling enemy skies are such airplanes as the Global Hawk, and now even satellites are being largely used for such matters. Once thought to be the greatest aircraft invention during the free-spending Reagan years, the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is now being forced to go through many changes. One main problem is that the pilots don’t have good enough G-suits, so many were passing out. But many are still patrolling home skies. Other main aerocraft in home skies is the now retiring McDonnell Douglas (later changed to Boeing) F-15 Eagle, the General Dynamics (later Lockheed Martin) F-16 Fighting Falcon (a.k.a. Viper), the McDonnell Douglas (Boeing) F-18 Hornet/Super Hornet, and the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II. Many great airplanes are still in the sky.
Please leave a comment if you have any questions.
Have a great day!