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Thread: Britains V bombers

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    Good thought John. Actually I was a surveyor and sound ranger in the Artillery when Noah was a boy. Mission Locate and destroy enemy artillery/guided missiles. This was done by placing, and surveying in, large hidden microphones. The sound of an enemy gun/missile was registered on tape connected to the microphones. From the order in which the sound reached each microphone, we could - via our old Brunsvega or Twin Marchant hand-churned computers - backtrack from each mike to locate the position of the enemy gun. Order a ranging round fired at that position, and record the sound of our exploding shell. Take the tape, together with the first one, and run them through the 'Comparator'. Give the correction to our own guns, full battery fire, and he's gone - unless he's moved quick smart. Ever since I saw the first 'stealth' plane, I've thought that ancient technology could be brought up to date to track them. I wonder if anybody is working on it?

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    Sunderland air museum (North Est Air Museum) has a Vulcan bomber amongst its exhibits and its a very scary looking bit of kit when you get close up to it.
    NORTH EAST AIRCRAFT MUSEUM
    May have posted this before but my first experience of a V bomber was when on leave and helping the local farmer who delivered our milk , with his haymaking. We were working in his field highest up in the valley that we lived in, him driving the tractor pulling the baling machine and me driving the tractor and trailor collecting the baled hay. He was driving facing towards the valley and me in the opposite direction, when all of a sudden he stopped his tractor, leaped off and ran for cover. Looking over my shoulder all I could see was one of these V Bombers literally below my eye line climbing out of the valley behind me. It passed over me so low that I could clearly see the pilot waving at us and could almost count the number of rivets in its wings. Seconds after it had flown over us came its engine noise which was almost loud enough to burst your ear drums.
    The valley where we lived in the Lake District was on the flight path for low level flight training for the RAF (500ft or less) and we often had the spectacle of Lightening and later Jaguar and, Harrier and Tornado fighters screaming down the valley at eye level doing their low level flying exercises. They used a rail level crossing a mile or so down the road for a turn marker and my mothers big sitting room window that looked out over the valley would shake like crazy when ever any of these fly pasts occurred. Scared the heck out of my wife to be when I first took her over to meet and stay with my mother and one of these fly past occurred. If you did not know it they looked almost like they were going to come straight into that window before they would jink hard a starboard and go zooming off down the valley.
    rgds
    JA

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  5. #13
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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    A few years ago I came across this very sobering report (for the Americans) on the performance of the RAF's new Avro Vulcans. During the NORAD exercises, ALL civilian air traffic over North America had been grounded (so 9/11 was not the first time this had happened).

    "Vulcan Intrusions on NORAD Exercise in 1961 scare America.
    The exercises that probably did most to secure the Vulcan's reputation among NATO's military partners were kept secret from the general public until declassified in 1997, when Russia was judged to be no longer a threat. These were Operation Skyshield, three massive exercises conducted to test US and Canadian air defences against an attack by Soviet nuclear bombers.
    NORAD (North American Air [now Aerospace] Defense Command) was fully aware that only one bomber needed to get through in order to wipe out a city, but its planners were confident of the effectiveness of the great chain of radar stations spread across Canada and down the north-east coast of the US. This was the DEW (or Distant Early Warning) Line, To test it, NORAD invited RAF Bomber Command to participate in a Skyshield exercise in October 1961, and two squadrons each sent four of their new B.Mk 2A Vulcans.

    One group flew from Scotland to 'attack' from the north, coming in over Labrador; the other four took off from Bermuda and came in from the south. It is doubtful if the North American defenders realised quite what stiff opposition the Vulcan presented. Not only did it carry the latest electronic countermeasures (ECM) equipment but its delta plan form turned out to offer a minimal, near-stealth level of radar visibility. Only the tail fin reflected a small signal.
    The four Vulcans from the north came in high at 56,000 ft (to simulate Russian bombers - Vulcans could actually fly higher). By now the airspace above the American and Canadian eastern seaboard was thick with fighters trying to detect and 'lock on' to the intruders. One Vulcan, was intercepted and 'shot down' by an alert F-101 Voodoo over Goose Bay; the other three got through to land unopposed in Newfoundland, having well and truly breached the DEW Line.
    Three of the Vulcans coming from the south put up a joint electronic screen to jam the defenders' radar, behind which the fourth sneaked around and landed undetected in New York State, twenty minutes' flying time from New York City and a mere six minutes from Montreal! NORAD must have felt it was just as well the Soviets wouldn't be flying Vulcans. In theory, the Brits could have obliterated Washington DC, New York City and even Chicago before running out of fuel. It was deeply sobering for the supporters of the new ‘impregnable’ radar defense chain."

    In 2008, I was at Farnborough to see the restored Vulcan XH558 putting on it's first civilian air display since taking flight again. The spectator turnout was incredible, and everyone was standing during the performance, with a huge round of applause for the crew after the Vulcan had landed again. Then, 50-60 % of the crowd disappeared - they had only come to see one aircraft perform! That the Vulcan was able to fly for another 8 years after that show is a tribute to it's manufacturers, it's maintenance staff, the aircrew, and the supporters who contributed so many millions of pounds to keep the aircraft airworthy. Surely the best recruiting tool the RAF ever had, and it was always spectacular to watch! Two attached photos are from 2015 - the RIAT take off, and Over the Solent

    Skilly
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    Tony, the UK press featured that story not long after it happened,I remember reading about it, the Americans were not pleased.
    Years ago tomorrow's World the TV programme, broadcast one of it's shows from an American air show. The Harrier was on display,apparently the Yanks were making disparaging remarks about the plane.
    The ushot was that a American fighter pilot challenged the Harrier to a duel, cameras were mounted on both planes. The Yanks took off, after burner lit, climbed I to the sky, the Harrier took off vertically. The Harrier hovered vertically, the Yank got the Harrier in his sight, ready to fire, Harrier vectored to the side, caeback on course and downed the Yank. Crowd were not best pleased to say the least seeing one of their finest downed by an ugly duckling.
    Regards
    Vic
    Ps not long after the Vulcan incident a fictional book was released based on the story of how the Vulcan wiped out America.

  7. #15
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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    I have been reading up on the development of the Harrier, there was a lot of American money pumped into its developement as I think Harold Wilson was against it's progress , I think the Wilson goverment cancelled the TSR 2 which was supposed to be far better thank anything on the market at the time?

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    The story circulating from the RR plant in Glasgow at the time was the Americans were ****e scared of the TSR2. It was capable of flying below Radar.
    Wilson Government needed money, ultimatum, drop the plane and we will back you. The Government pledged that it would not fall into the wrong hands. Not good enough.
    Result TSR2 was dropped, UK got the money.

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    Vic, about 12 years back I had to do a maintenance/servicing certification course for hi-lift platforms - the instructor was flown in from Australia. One day when he closed one of his folders I saw a beautiful photo of a TSR2 on the cover, and asked him if he had ever seen one. Turns out he was an airframe fitter, and had helped construct them! He related much the same story - the aircraft was frightening the UK's allies, and they didn't want it around in case the wrong people got their hands on it! Imagine what the world would be like if everyone subscribed to this theory - Hitler and his 'V' weapons would have won!

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    Great memories of the Vulcans in Darwin for 'Top Limit' 1974. The Vulcans always attended this annual show and would fly in from Timor area at wave top height and under the radar. From the Darwin wharf you were looking down on the top of them. They then climbed straight over the control tower and took it out.


    I was CO of Navy Sea Cadets and we had a camp at Larrakeyah Barracks, and had the boys out at Darwin Airfield at the close of the games. We were inspecting a Vulcan on the ground when the last aircraft to land was another Vulcan. We watched her approach and as her wheels touched the tarmac there was an almighty roar as she took off turning hard to port over the control tower. Initially we all thought it was a crash but just a very senior RAF officer showing off. The rumour was that ever one in control tower hit the deck when they saw her coming.

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    Default Re: Britains V bombers

    one has to wonder how much weight the backroom politics of governments play in decisions of the aero industry... back in the mid fifties the accepted two main builders and sellers were the us and Briton. at that time Canada was developing and building the Avro Arrow, and advanced fighter capable of reaching 1.9 mach, considered to be so far advanced for the time. when offered for sale no one wanted to know. in 1959 with a new tory government just in power, it was suddenly scrapped and all prototypes, spares, and machinery were ordered destroyed. reason given, too costly... 15000 avro workers were thrown out of work. the only piece that remains today is a nose and air intake sectioned that was spirited away and hidden for years, now in the aviation museum in Ottawa. probably we will never know the deals made behind closed doors
    regards, stan

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