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KevinK

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  • Birthday 02/28/1952

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  1. There used to be a press kit for each major NASA mission: they were called "News References". I took a cursory look on the JPL website but I didn't see one there for Voyager. I guess it's not surprising as it would date from 1977. The News References - usually 100+ pages - were excellent for detailed descriptions/diagrams of parts, subsystems, etc but in those days they were paper documents, of course. It might be worth continuing an internet search in case someone went to the trouble to scan one in. By the way, you may not know, but Eduard produces an etch set (ED48761) for the Hasegawa kit. HTH Kevin p.s. take a look at the Wikipedia page on the Voyager Program: there are lots of references quoted and some may have what you need.
  2. ... and RAF Canberra PR 9s, Nimrods, C-130s, C-17s, A-400Ms.
  3. Good question. It all depends on their confidence in their own understanding of the requirements. Airbus can certainly leverage their hard-won previous C-46 experience. I've worked on both sides of the fence and on both sides of the Atlantic in aerospace procurement and I've seen major Primes screw up by not understanding RFP elements or their implications. It usually adds to your probability of success to have someone on your team who gives confidence to the customer that you have drawn on all the best experience which complements your own. For Airbus, no-one would doubt their ability to produce a good, workable tanker, but they will also need to show how it integrates into the US war-fighting fleet. If Airbus can do this on its own resources, they may not need a partner.
  4. Agreed! Although it tends to be much easier to sell into the Armies than Air Forces or Navies, at least in the Western world. Air Forces/Navies are highly-technical services who want to "dot the Is and cross the Ts", whereas Armies are much more user-oriented. Many years ago, an Army helicopter mast-mounted sight specification was summarized by the Army procurement official as "Fundamentally, we're looking for a mirror on a stick". Refreshing, and unlikely to be said by the Navy or Air Force.
  5. Just another observation: regardless of their US-manufactured content, EADS will still need a US Prime Contractor as a partner on any bid they might make. The basic reasons are that their aircraft will need to be (1) procured under US DoD regulations and (2) integrated into existing defense architecture/operations/procedures, etc. It's quite a big, time-consuming job, with the potential to derail the purchase if not understood and executed well.
  6. ... and don't forget their Starliner crew transport to the ISS: years late, massive cost overruns and dumb technical errors. Boeing has been losing its experience base for many years. Their strength in engineering is now gone: retirements, quits and the inability of the company to interest young engineers in a career versus the graphics/software industry has now become an existential issue for them. In my time in industry, I've noticed that - while one misfortune motivates engineers to stay and fix things - multiple program failures tend to drive people away, because they perceive that executive management has failed. In the Seattle area alone, there are over 300 computer graphics companies, plus Amazon, Blue Origin and many other growing, modern companies: these employers substantially didn't exist 20 years ago. Boeing, famous for layoffs and (relatively) poor employment benefits/standards simply can't compete for the best engineers. Additionally, Boeing has been running down ever since the "reverse takeover" by McDonnell-Douglas management a generation ago resulted in short term profit goals. All of these factors have now come home to roost.
  7. Actually, it was common to use the boom for parachuting. One spectacular "party trick" which only the Bev could perform was to put VIPs in aft facing seats at the rear of the freight bay, main doors off, and have them watch the Paras jumping from the boom hatch just a few feet away.
  8. That photo is of a modern mock-up: not at all representative of the real aircraft.
  9. There was an "F-19 Stealth Fighter" by Testors in the mid '80's. It was a mythical aircraft which looked more like the offspring of an SR-71/D-21 drone than the real F-117, but it appeared before the F-117 shape was known publicly. A good "what-if".
  10. It was 252 Squadron, I believe, Steve. https://military.wikia.org/wiki/No._252_Squadron_RAF
  11. Well, it wasn't terribly reliable in the Beverley, for a rather unusual reason. The Bev used a 16 ft diameter prop which was susceptible to resonant vibrations at engine rpms between 1900 & 2300, i.e. right in the middle of the cruising range. Many attempts were made to cure this, but with only limited success. The Beverley ODM required the use of 2400 rpm until sufficient fuel was burned off to permit the use of 1900 rpm. This had a drastic effect on engine life - especially as the Bev was underpowered, as the design had been originally intended to use the Proteus. Towards the end of the aircraft's service, on any given airframe, no one engine was permitted to go beyond 700 hr TBO and the others were limited to 250 hr. This would have been unacceptable in commercial use (which typically looked for 2000 - 2500 hr), and was one underlying reason why the Beverley was retired when it was. There was a constant attempt by Bristol to increase the power of the Centaurus to give the Beverley more power margin, with the Centaurus 173 & 175 series. When the problem of cylinder heads blowing off was cured, the spark plug inserts started blowing out. More power was being demanded than a piston engine could reliably deliver. The engines were overstressed. One reason that this all might have relevance to present and future Sea Fury operations is that some (possibly most?) of the Centaurus in use will have originally been ex-Beverley units. Even with major overhauls, they may well be less reliable than Centaurus which had an easier life.
  12. Just a suggestion but the only thing that would make sense to me would be if the upper and lower sections of the rudder were separately actuated on the prototypes. Was this perhaps trialed initially? There is a prominent panel line across the middle of the rudder ....
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