"The USGS released a map of the moon which
answers the question about the composition of the moon surface. The new map explains
the 4.5-billion-year-old history of our neighbour in space. Scientists from the
USGS Astrogeology Science Center collaborated with NASA and the Lunar Planetary
Institute to map the entire lunar surface. The map - called the 'Unified
Geologic Map of the Moon' was created using six other maps drafted during NASA's
Apollo lunar missions and fused with the recent data from satellite missions. It
could serve as a reference point for lunar science studies and future manned-missions
to the Moon and could be an invaluable addition for the science community world
has been one of my favorite actors ever since "Top
Gun." He is one of the few that do their own stunts, and he is a real-life pilot
and even owns a
P−51 Mustang. "NASA
said Tuesday it is working with Tom Cruise to film a movie on the International
Space Station, but details on the arrangements are scarce. The news that Cruise
was in talks with to shoot an action-adventure film on the space station was first
reported Monday by Deadline, which said the actor is working with SpaceX on the
project. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine tweeted Tuesday that the agency is 'excited
to work Tom Cruise on a film aboard the space station. We need popular media to
inspire a new generation of engineers and scientists to make NASA's ambitious plans
a reality.' Cruise, the 57-year-old star of Top Gun and the 'Mission: Impossible'
film franchise, has performed daring stunts before. NASA did not confirm Tuesday
whether Cruise would himself fly to the space station as part of the film. SpaceX
has not confirmed its role in the film project, but Cruise could fly to the space
station on the company's Crew Dragon spaceship..." Hopefully, China won't be involved
and be able to force the exclusion of a Taiwan patch from Cruise's uniform as in
"Bob Brown, AMA's most recent president
emeritus, has passed away after a brief illness. Bob, 75, a member of the AMA Model
Aviation Hall of Fame, served two terms as AMA president from 2012 through 2016.
He died May 14 in his home state of Pennsylvania. Bob had been a member of the Southern
Tier Aero Radio Society (STARS) club in western New York. In his later years, he
became interested in multirotor racing and how to make it part of the aeromodeling
hobby. He enjoyed attending the MultiGP International Open and many other events
held at the International Aeromodeling Center. AMA wants to thank Bob for his tireless
efforts in advocating for the hobby that he loved and for his contributions to model
aviation." RIP, AMA #100!
This article entitled "The Boom in R/C Boats"
appeared in the June 1955 edition of Popular Electronics magazine which,
during the early years of its existence devoted quite a bit of print space to radio
control airplanes, boats and cars. As with all things electronics, a huge surge
in consumer interest was occurring with over-the-air communications. Bill (William)
Winter served as the editor of the Academy of Model Aeronautics' (AMA's) American
Modeler and American Aircraft Modeler magazines from 1966 through
1974, but his efforts to promote all form of modeling - airplanes, helicopters,
cars, boats, trains, and rockets - covered many decades. His first recorded article,
"Building the Famous Udet Flamingo," (co-authored by Walter McBride), was published
in the March 1935 issue of Universal Model Airplane News magazine...
selected a mission to dispatch six
CubeSats, each the size of a toaster oven, to an orbit more than 20,000 miles
from Earth to study massive particle ejections from the sun. The Sun Radio Interferometer
Space Experiment, or SunRISE, mission will launch no later than July 1, 2023, after
its selection by NASA as a mission of opportunity under the agency's Explorers program.
SunRISE will consist of six CubeSats flying as close as 6 miles (10 kilometers)
from each other. The nanosatellites will together act as a giant radio telescope,
detecting low-frequency emissions from solar activity and downlinking the measurements
through NASA's Deep Space Network. Data gathered by the SunRISE CubeSats will tell
scientists about the source of coronal mass ejections, which launch huge bubbles
of gas and magnetic fields from the sun. Employing a constellation of small satellites
will allow researchers..."
under contract to carry NASA science instruments to the moon on a privately-developed
robotic spacecraft, said this week its first commercial lunar mission will target
landing in October 2021 near a deep, narrow valley named Vallis Schröteri. The startup
company, based in Houston, announced Monday the landing site for its first
lunar landing mission. Vallis Schröteri is located in on the upper left part
of the moon's near side, as viewed from the northern hemisphere on Earth. Scientists
think the channel-like valley, or rille, has volcanic origins. The rille, also known
as Schröter's Valley, likely formed from a collapsed volcanic lava tube..."
This is the Sunday, January 23, 1944, "Flyin'
Jenny" comic strip. The Baltimore Sun newspaper, published not far from where
I grew up near Annapolis, Maryland, carried "Flyin' Jenny" from the late 1930s until
the strip ended in the mid 1940s, so I saved a couple dozen from there. The first
one I downloaded has a publication date of December 7, 1941 - that date "which will
live in infamy," per President Roosevelt. Many Americans were receiving word over
the radio of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor while reading this comic at the
breakfast table. I expect that soon there will be World War II themes. "Flyin'
Jenny," whose real name was Virginia Dare (what's in a name?), was a test pilot
for Starcraft Aviation Factory who divided her time between wringing out new airplane
designs and chasing bad guys. She was the creation of artist and storyteller Russell
Keaton. All I have are the Sunday editions, but it was a daily strip as well. From
the time of the Wright Brothers' successful flights at Kill Devil Hill, Americans
have been in love with aviation. In the early days, access to flight was limited
to those with know-how and access...
"A prototype for
SpaceX's Starship space vehicle collapsed during pressure testing early Friday
at the company's facility in South Texas - the program's third failure during such
testing since November - but assembly of a new version is already underway. The
stainless steel cylinder appeared to rupture near its top after filling with super-cold
liquid nitrogen overnight at SpaceX's launch site at Boca Chica, Texas. Elon Musk,
SpaceX's founder and CEO, tweeted early Friday that the accident may have been the
result of a 'test configuration mistake.' The Starship the upper stage of of SpaceX's
next-generation launch and space transportation system. Coupled with a massive booster
named the Super Heavy, the Starship could haul more than 100 metric tons, or 220,000
pounds, of cargo to low Earth orbit, according to SpaceX..."
Antonov AN-225 cargo airplane is up in the air after a long stint on the ground.
Aviation enthusiasts will be delighted to hear the news that the world's largest
cargo airplane to ever grace our skies is back. The Antonov AN-225 was tracked by
Flightradar24 on Wednesday as it flew out of its hub at Antonov Airport in Kiev,
Ukraine. After 18 months on the ground without so much as a peep by the airline
in the meantime, the AN-225 took off and flew over rural areas for two hours, before
landing back down. After the monstrous AN-225 became grounded in October 2018 as
part of its maintenance and upgrade program, no further information on its improvements..."
The name Frank Ehling was big in control
line circles (pun intended) back in the middle of the last century. He was a very
active modeler in free flight, control line, and radio control for that matter,
and was the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) technical director for a while. Frank
was a prolific and accomplished airplane designer, plans draftsman, flyer, and competitor.
This article and plans for his "Combat King"
control line combat model appeared in the June 1959 issue of American Modeler magazine.
It is a flying wing design with a 37" wingspan and is meant to powered with a .29
to .35 size engine. As with most of the vintage model designs, it would easily be
converted to electric power and be competitive. Construction materials are standard
balsa and plywood.
Here is an interesting
idea from the world of astronomy - a
Lunar Crater Radio Telescope. RF Cafe visitor
Alan Dewey sent me this article on
plans to build a 1 km diameter radio telescope, operating in the 5 to 100 m
wavelength band, in a crater on the far side of the moon. That will facilitate blocking
of Earth-origin radio emissions from the telescope's super-sensitive receiver. Unlike
the 60-year-old 1,000 meter
radio telescope, the moon-base instrument will sweep a much larger area of the sky
and at a greater frequency than its Earth-based relative. "An ultra-long-wavelength
radio telescope on the far-side of the Moon has tremendous advantages compared to
Earth-based and Earth-orbiting telescopes, including: (i) Such a telescope can observe
the universe at wavelengths greater than 10 m (i.e., frequencies below 30 MHz),
which are reflected by the Earth's ionosphere and are hitherto largely unexplored
"Wild Bill" Netzeband taught me a new word
in his July 1916 "Control Line
Capers" column in American Modeler magazine - taciturn. It means temperamentally
disinclined to talk according to Merriam-Webster. Not stopping there, he uses the
word "loquacious," meaning full of excessive talk. Not normally given to the use
of such highbrow language - at least in his columns - methinks perhaps Wild Bill
referenced a copy of Roget's Thesaurus for this month's piece. His writing style
is both elucidative and jocose (two can play this game). The AYSC held at Willow
Grove NAS, is mentioned; it stands for Air Youth State Competition. The monoline
versus dual line debate in control line speed was a fairly new issue in 1961, and
it is still "up in the air" so to speak today. Preferences dictate in the end...
control (R/C) systems operating in the 2.4 GHz ISM band, using one of or
a combination of frequency hopping and direct sequence spread spectrum scheme, have
been in widespread use since the early 2000s. As with any new technology, there
was a lot of reluctance to adoption of the systems based on a few reports (valid
or not) of performance issues - primarily lack of control range where communications
between the transmitter (Tx) and receiver (Rx) with a pilot and aircraft was lost
and a crash ensued. Tx power was already at the FCC-mandated maximum, so manufacturers
quickly improved receivers by adding diversity with a second Rx antenna. The receiver
microprocessor continuously monitors signal integrity from both antennas and uses
the best one. It is the same scheme that was already being used by WiFi routers
also operating at 2.4 GHz...
Here is yet another of Walter M. Jefferies,
Jr.'s inked masterpieces as it appeared in the July 1954 issue of Air Trails
- Hobbies for Young Men magazine. This 4-view drawing of the experimental
Skyray reveals many details of airframe components, fuselage cross-sections,
and panel lines. Per Wikipedia: The Douglas F4D Skyray (later redesignated F-6 Skyray)
is an American carrier-based fighter/interceptor built by the Douglas Aircraft Company.
Although it was in service for a relatively short time (1956–1964) and never entered
combat, it was the first carrier-launched aircraft to hold the world's absolute
speed record, at 752.943 mph, and was the first United States Navy and United States
Marine Corps fighter that could exceed Mach 1 in level flight. It was the last fighter
produced by the Douglas Aircraft Company before...
"UPS Flight Forward, a subsidiary of the
logistics company, has partnered up with Wingcopter, a German drone-making startup
to create a fleet of
multipurpose delivery drones in the U.S. and globally. UPS selected Wingcopter
as its partner given the company's impressive unmanned aircraft technology and great
track record of delivering goods over long distances to remote places. 'Our collaboration
with Wingcopter helps pave the way for us to start drone delivery service in new
use-cases. UPS Flight Forward is building a network of technology partners to broaden
our unique capability to serve customers and extend our leadership in drone delivery,'
said Bala Ganesh, vice president of the UPS Advanced Technology Group..."
People are paying amazing prices for a piece
of model aviation history. This 1968 era
Cirrus sailplane kit recently sold at auction on eBay for $2,500. You might
think for that price the seller would pick up the shipping cost, but evidently not.
According the the BLS Inflation Calculator, that $2,500 in 2020 money is the equivalent
of $505 in 1968. The Graupner Weltmeister Cirrus (kit #4229) has a wingspan of 3000 mm
(3 meters). The box states, "True-to-scale R/C soarer for tow launching, slope
soaring and conversion to powered glider. Accommodates multi-channel or proportional
R/C equipment with 2 - 6 channels for rudder, elevator and aileron control. Wingspan
is 118 1/8" " The fuselage appears to be constructed of four sections of molded
ABS plastic. My guess is that packet of " A look at the kit contents shows lots
of metal parts, including an aluminum main former for the power pod assembly. Lots
of balsa and hardwood parts are required for the big wing and empennage components...
"The Army and Navy, under supervision of
the Missile Defense Agency, jointly tested a
hypersonic glide body at the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Hawaii this week,
according to the Department of Defense. According to the Pentagon, the MDA monitored
and gathered tracking data from the flight experiment that will inform its ongoing
development of systems designed to defend against adversary hypersonic systems.
The experiment - and future tests like it - is intended to inform the DoD's goal
of fielding hypersonic capabilities within the next few years. Hypersonic weapons
can fly at speeds greater than five times the speed of sound..."
The Andrews Aircraft Model Company (AAMCo)
produced a radio control airplane, the
H−Ray, that was my first
successful RC model. An advertisement from a 1964 edition of RC Modeler includes
both the H-Ray (high wing) and the S−Ray (shoulder wing). I'm pretty sure that I
put an OS .20 R/C engine in it - probably the only one I had at the time. Advertisement
for the OS Digital 3-channel radio control system I bought second-hand from a man
down the street from where I lived as a teenager. I paid him $100 for it sometime
around 1974 or so. That is the equivalent of $532 in 2020 dollars according to the
BLS's Inflation Calculator. My second-hand OS Digital 3-channel radio control system
was installed in it, which is why I can still vividly remember running after it
with the transmitter held high above my head trying to regain control after it ran
out of range. My H-Ray spent a night in a corn field out at the original PGRC club
in along Route 301 in southern Maryland because of it. The range with that OS digital
system was about 600 feet under ideal conditions...
"Robert 'Hoot' Gibson's priorities: (1) Fly.
(2) Fly some more. An hour before the doors of the National Air and Space Museum's
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center opened to visitors, the vast, multi-level space was
filled with a theatrical pre-curtain hush. Only a few docents were here, getting
reacquainted with the 170-some air- and spacecraft on display, machines that had
made some of the most important history of the last hundred years. The docents were
there to tell their stories. So was the man I'd traveled to Chantilly, Virginia,
Robert 'Hoot' Gibson. Hoot (the nickname originated with cowboy movie star Edmund
'Hoot' Gibson) knew many of these flying machines personally. From light piston
aircraft to thundering World War II fighters to supersonic jets to the space shuttle,
Gibson had flown them - 111 types so far..."
Nowadays know as Spartan College of Aeronautics
and Technology, the
Spartan School of Aeronautics was founded in 1928 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, by oil
magnate William G. Skelly. Skelly believed air transportation was the way of
the future and to be successful would require skilled aircraft technicians and pilots.
Spartan claims to have trained more than 100,000 technicians and pilots for careers
in the aeronautics industry. They now have branches in Denver, Colorado, and Los
Angeles and Inland Empire, California. The Spartan Black Cat logo, which includes
the number 13, and the slogan "Knowledge and Skill Overcome Superstition and Luck,"
was the original insignia of the Spartan College Dawn Patrol. The fact that Spartan
School of Aeronautics began only a year before of the stock market crash of 1929
and survived the ensuing decade-long Great Depression and Dust Bowl years is a testament
to its tenacity. This advertisement appeared in a 1954 issue of Air Trails -
Hobbies for Young Men magazine...
"Facing immense challenges, the agency bulls
ahead with its
Launch System. From a test-stand catwalk almost 300 feet above the ground at
NASA's Stennis Space Center in southern Mississippi, Maury Vander and I take in
a view of the 14,000-acre rocket propulsion test complex, its 200-square-mile acoustical
buffer zone, and distant New Orleans. Vander, who started at Stennis in 1989 after
graduating from the University of New Orleans with a degree in mechanical engineering,
is the chief of test operations for the approaching Green Run, a long-awaited test
that will certify for flight the core of a rocket that has been in development for
An icon of the radio control model airplane
sport, Bob Violett passed away on March 21st. He first made his mark on model aviation
in the 1970s as a champion R/C pylon contender. Bob later revolutionized the R/C
EDF and turbine jet world with his first-of-their-kind kits produced by
BVM Jets. "U.S. Navy jet carrier pilot flying
the F-8 Crusader and the A-4 Skyhawk during the Vietnam War. Bob was awarded the
Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with Gold and Silver Stars, Navy Commendation
Medal with Gold Star, National Defense Medal and the Vietnam Service Medal. After
being honorably discharged from the Navy, Bob started a career as a commercial Airplane
Pilot for Eastern Airlines. In 1981 Bob merged his long-time love for model airplanes
into a new business venture BVM Jets." I first saw Bob in action at the
PGRC club flying field in the mid-1970s
and at club meetings. Here is a tribute to Bob Violett by
News magazine, and another from the
Dignity Memorial. R.I.P.
When I was a teenager living in Holly Hill
Harbor, Maryland, a man down the road from me was an avid R/C modeler and had a
carport chock full of airplanes, engines, radio systems, and assorted modeling tools
and accessories. I've mentioned him before; I bought my 3-channel OS Digitron DP-3
radio system from him for a cool $100 (earned from my paper route and cutting grass).
He was kind enough to give my flying buddy, Jerry Flynn, and me a couple pieces
of his excess inventory. A broken but repairable Andrews MiniMaster was handed to
me one day, which was a real thrill for me in the day. I fixed what needed fixing
and installed my 3-channel radio in it. Although the MiniMaster is a full house
"BAE Systems' new plane has the potential
to fly without landing for a year, and can maintain its position over a specific
point for monitoring purposes. At 35 meters, the wingspan of the new BAE Systems
aircraft equals that of a Boeing 737, yet the plane weighs in at just 150 kilograms,
including a 15 kg payload. The unmanned plane, dubbed the PHASA-35 (Persistent
High-Altitude Solar Aircraft), made its maiden voyage on 10 February at the
Royal Australian Air Force Woomera Test Range in South Australia. 'It flew for just
under an hour - enough time to successfully test its aerodynamics, autopilot system,
and maneuverability,' says Phil Varty, business development leader of emerging products
at BAE Systems. 'We'd previously tested..."
Top Flite Monokote
Sealing Iron, purchased in the mid-1970s, lasted until the late 1990s, when
the heating element burned out. A quarter century of use was not too bad. To replace
it, I bought a Tower Hobbies iron, and the first time I used it the handle started
to bend where it transitions from a hollow round shape to a flat shape. The metal
was noticeably softer than the Top Flite handle, which never even hinted at bending.
For two decades I have had to be very careful not to press too hard on the iron
lest it bend. After many times of bending and straightening the handle, a major
stress crack had formed, and it was pretty evident that the handle would not last
much longer. I would either need to buy a new Monokote sealing iron, which in all
likelihood would be equally cheaply built since Top Flite does not make them anymore,
or come up with some kind or repair for this one...
While I never had the pleasure of owning
an AAMCo Lou Andrews
biplane, it was one of the many kits I though someday I would build. After 61 years
of existence, there still is no Aeromaster Too kit in my collection, and at this
point likely never will be. The Aeromaster Too was a four-channel ("full-house"
as it was known back in the day) aerobatic biplane with a 48" wingspan for .45 to
.61 in3 displacement glow fuel engines. It used balsa, plywood, and hardwood construction
along with music wire components for the landing gear and cabane struts. The photos
presented here were downloaded from multiple Aeromaster Too kits listed on eBay.
They typically sell in the $125 to $200 price range, which is very comparable to
what a new kit of similar size and complexity would sell for today...
"It takes a lot of fuel to launch something
into space. Sending NASA's Space Shuttle into orbit required more than 3.5 million
pounds of fuel, which is about 15 times heavier than a blue whale. But a new type
of engine called a
detonation engine promises to make rockets not only more fuel-efficient but
also more lightweight and less complicated to construct. There's just one problem:
Right now this engine is too unpredictable to be used in an actual rocket. Researchers
at the University of Washington have developed a mathematical model that describes
how these engines work. With this information, engineers can, for the first time,
develop tests to improve these engines..."
Some of my favorite YouTube aeromodeling videos
are converted from movies of vintage contesting events. This "Marvelous Miniatures" documentary
is a prime example for showing the state of aircraft modeling in the 1970s, when
I got into radio control (R/C). See Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) President
John Worth at the Toledo show, soaring at Torrey Pines, Maxy Hester and his famous
Ryan STA, techno-modeler Maynard Hill, digital proportional R/C system pioneer Phil
Craft, along with many other "unknowns" are shown doing their thing. Something that
always stands out in these vintage films is how devoid of residential and commercial
development the surrounding areas are.
"Video Friday is your weekly selection of
awesome robotics videos, collected by your Automaton bloggers. We'll also be posting
a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months. These videos
show some highlights from the
Lake Kivu Drone Challenge, which took place in Rwanda, earlier this month. In
addition to a conference and forum, international teams and their drones competed
in emergency delivery, sample pick-up, and find and assess tasks."
AOPA's government affairs team had the chance
to catch up with U.S. Representative
Sam Graves, a longtime general aviation pilot, advocate, and AOPA member, about
his aviation background and GA [General Aviation] issues that he is working on in
Congress. "You've flown a lot of different airplanes over the years, but which is
your favorite? Honestly, I don't have a particular all-time favorite. I own a 1947
PA–11 Piper Cub Special, and I'm a part-owner of a T–6 Texan and Vultee BT–13. I'm
also working on restoring a 1943 Beech AT–10. It's hard to beat the P–40 or P–51,
but whichever plane I'm flying at the moment—that's my favorite. You have established
yourself as an effective leader and key advocate for transportation and certainly
for general aviation while in Congress. You serve as the top Republican on the powerful
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Please tell us a little about
yourself, your career, and your passion for flying..."
Test Equipment, an electronic test equipment rentals and sales company headquartered
in North County San Diego, has published a blog post entitled "Keep
UAVs Flying High with Proper Testing." This blog is the first in a series of
four planned articles that will take a closer look at the global fascination with
UAVs and how they are used, whether for farming or for warfare, and some of the
best test tools that can be applied to ensuring the best UAV performance possible.
"Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), popularly known as drones, have been a part of
military operations for decades, often paving the way for an operation with their
remote intelligence, reconnaissance, and surveillance (ISR) capabilities. Those
familiar with military drones may think of million-dollar UAVs like the Predator
with comprehensive electronic weapons payloads, including radar and sophisticated
navigation and guidance systems. The military demand for fixed- and rotary-wing
UAVs has grown steadily over the past decade...
By 1946, nobody had ever even launched an
into outer space, much less a manned one. Nevertheless, plenty of people were
working toward it. With World War II having been over for a year and much of
the technology developed being applied toward future wars and societal advancement,
the dream of exploiting a presence in orbit around the earth was hotly pursued.
The world's superpowers were engaged in a race into space both for prestige and
military advantage. As is the case today, countries pretended to get along well
enough to cooperate on shared goals, but we all know behind the scenes scheming
was going on about how to apply lessons learned to the disadvantage of "them" and
to the benefit of "us." It is a survival of the fittest scenario. Unfortunately,
when you cannot trust "them" to not do the same to "us," offensive and defensive
plans are required - it has always been so and probably always will be ...but, I
digress. This article by Will Ley delves into some of the then-anticipated issues...
This article from the January 2020 issue
of Air & Space magazine explains why you remain conscious at 30,000
feet. "We humans need air to breathe, so we do best around sea level. Airplanes
are at their best up high, where the air is thin and smooth. And therein lies the
rub: We invented a machine that thrives where we don't. This became obvious as soon
as engine power increased to a point at which aviators could reach altitudes where
they lost consciousness. At first, fliers coped by filling tanks with
pressurized oxygen and inhaling the gas through rubber tubes; later, form-fitting
face masks made oxygen delivery more reliable. In many high-flying light airplanes
and military aircraft, oxygen systems and face masks..."
"The plane looks more like an air force jet,
but it could make flying much more efficient. One big difference between land-based
vehicles and aircraft is that there's been much less innovation for airplanes in
the last few decades than there has been for cars. Aerospace company, Airbus, is
looking to change that. Their
MAVERIC is not set to fly in the skies anytime soon, but the prospects certainly
look promising, and more efficient than current airplane models. You may have noticed
that most aircraft have a similar design: a single or double aisle long fuselage
that has wings attached on either side. There are exceptions, of course, namely
when it comes to military aircraft..."
According to UK National Archives: "6,725
[V−1s] were launched at Britain. Of these, 2,340 hit London, causing 5,475
deaths, with 16,000 injured." Re the map: "This patch of English woodland near the
village of Bromley Green, about eight miles from the Channel shore, was once a smoking
V−1 flying bomb - fired by Germany's Luftwaffe at London but shot down minutes
before getting there - crashed and exploded here around eight o'clock in the morning
on August 27, 1944, gouging a hole in the earth 10 feet deep and 20 feet across.
The blast of its warhead and fuel lifted the nearest house, more than 600 feet away,
off its foundations. Seventy-five years later, to the exact day, the old crater
is the site of an archaeological investigation led by two brothers who grew up hearing
stories of the terror wrought by Germany's V−1s. Colin and Sean Welch have searched
for fragments of the flying bombs over the past 10 years..."
Air Corps' BC−1 low-wing monoplane was North American Aviation's first trainer
aircraft (company designation was NA−16). The "BC" part of the designation stands
for "Basic Combat," so the Army intended to use the BC−1 on missions. If you think
it looks a lot like the AT−6 Texan trainer, it is because the AT−6 evolved from
the NA−16. In fact, the Wikipedia entries give April 1, 1935 as the date of maiden
flight for both of them. 17,000 variations were built from 1935 through 1939. This
construction article and plans appeared in the May 1941 issue of Flying Aces magazine.
Wingspan is about 20", making it a rather small model. Standard stick and tissue
methods are used, and a pattern is provided for carving your own propeller...
From 1955 to 1961, the TWA-sponsored "Rocket to
the Moon" was the E-ticket attraction of
the neighborhood of the Disneyland theme park modeled after a speculative utopian
future. (© Disney) Cox Control Line Demonstration Circle. Eric Boehm, in the "Letters"
section of the January 2020 issue of Air& Space magazine, submitted the following
comment: "'My Trips
to the Moon' (Sept. 2019) and the accommodating photos really caught my eye,
and not because of the big TWA rocket. the fenced-off area in the foreground was
the Disney Flying Circle. Between 1955 and 1966, daily demonstrations were conducted
using control-line model airplanes and gas-powered tether cars. The photo shows
a man in the center with both hands raised. He may be flying two models at once,
which was a regular display feature. There was one employee named Bart Klapinski
who could fly three airplanes simultaneously: One control handle in each hand and
a third in his mouth.
"Reilly's latest undertaking might be his
most challenging: a
North American XP-82, the second prototype - but the first to fly - of the U.S.
Army Air Corps' Twin Mustang. Invented by German-born aircraft designer Edgar Schmued
and green-lit by the U.S. Army Air Forces' General Hap Arnold in 1943, the Twin
Mustang is unique: It mates two North American P-51 fuselages with a common center
wing and a horizontal stabilizer. Schmued's double aircraft could accommodate a
two-man crew, which would lighten workload and reduce pilot fatigue - a necessity
for the airplane's expected long-range missions. In February 1947, Colonel Robert
E. Thacker flew a P-82B nonstop from Hawaii to New York without refueling. The 5,051-mile
flight is the longest nonstop flight ever made by a propeller-driven fighter..."
There is no doubt that Du−Bro set the stage
for commercially produced radio controlled (R/C) helicopters with the
Its use of a top-mounted engine that relied on counter-torque to set the main rotor
blades spinning was unique. There were a few published articles on homebrew free-flight
helicopters that used the arrangement, and Cox even marketed a ready-to-fly model
that had a Cox .020 engine mounted on top called the Sky Copter (I owned one as
a kid in the late 1960s). To my knowledge all other R/C helicopter models used a
gear or belt drive from the engine to the main rotor shaft. It is amazing that this
quite top-heavy configuration flew at all. Du−Bro engineers deserve a lot of credit.
Note extensive use of common Du−Bro products like wheel collars, pushrods and clevises,
strip aileron hookups, brass tubing, and nuts, bolts and screws. A lot of assembly
work was involved, including a good bit of soldering...
"Inspired by insects and small birds, this
wing design offers a massive endurance boost for
micro aerial vehicles. Drones of all sorts are getting smaller and cheaper,
and that's great - it makes them more accessible to everyone, and opens up new use
cases for which big expensive drones would be, you know, too big and expensive.
The problem with very small drones, particularly those with fixed-wing designs,
is that they tend to be inefficient fliers, and are very susceptible to wind gusts
as well as air turbulence caused by objects that they might be flying close to.
Unfortunately, designing for resilience and designing for efficiency are two different
Every single airport on Earth will be featured
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020. "This is an impressive feat considering there
are a total of 37,000 airports worldwide. Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020, the impressive
game unveiled at E3 last year, will feature every single airport on Earth. Yes!
You read that correctly: every single one. Developer Asobo Studio has put in an
amazing amount of work into this game that is hyper-realistic, and now they are
offering players the chance to fly anywhere on the planet. If that's not something
to get excited about, then I don't know what is. To be clear, there are 37,000 airports
on Earth and all these were manually designed in the game to look just like their
real-world counterparts. In addition, the 80 most frequented airports will be given
extra attention to detail...
Getz Memorial Fly-In is scheduled for June 12-14, at Hazel Sig's airport 2 miles
south of Montezuma, Iowa. Sig doesn't give much information on their website, so
you might want to check on the
events page. I try to buy from Sig as much as possible for nostalgic reasons
(dating back to the early 1970s), but honestly, their website is not done very well
- slow, clunky and not inspirational.