Some cool turned components manufacturer images:
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center: SR-71 Blackbird and Space Shuttle Enterprise in the distance
Image by Chris Devers
See a lot more photos of this, and the Wikipedia write-up.
Information, quoting from Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird:
No reconnaissance aircraft in history has operated globally in more hostile airspace or with such comprehensive impunity than the SR-71, the world’s fastest jet-propelled aircraft. The Blackbird’s functionality and operational achievements placed it at the pinnacle of aviation technologies developments during the Cold War.
This Blackbird accrued about 2,800 hours of flight time during 24 years of active service with the U.S. Air Force. On its final flight, March 6, 1990, Lt. Col. Ed Yielding and Lt. Col. Joseph Vida set a speed record by flying from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., in 1 hour, four minutes, and 20 seconds, averaging three,418 kilometers (2,124 miles) per hour. At the flight’s conclusion, they landed at Washington-Dulles International Airport and turned the airplane more than to the Smithsonian.
Transferred from the United States Air Force.
Lockheed Aircraft Corporation
Clarence L. "Kelly" Johnson
Country of Origin:
United States of America
General: 18ft five 15/16in. x 55ft 7in. x 107ft 5in., 169998.5lb. (five.638m x 16.942m x 32.741m, 77110.8kg)
Other: 18ft five 15/16in. x 107ft 5in. x 55ft 7in. (five.638m x 32.741m x 16.942m)
Twin-engine, two-seat, supersonic strategic reconnaissance aircraft airframe constructed largley of titanium and its alloys vertical tail fins are constructed of a composite (laminated plastic-sort material) to lessen radar cross-section Pratt and Whitney J58 (JT11D-20B) turbojet engines feature large inlet shock cones.
No reconnaissance aircraft in history has operated in a lot more hostile airspace or with such full impunity than the SR-71 Blackbird. It is the fastest aircraft propelled by air-breathing engines. The Blackbird’s overall performance and operational achievements placed it at the pinnacle of aviation technologies developments in the course of the Cold War. The airplane was conceived when tensions with communist Eastern Europe reached levels approaching a complete-blown crisis in the mid-1950s. U.S. military commanders desperately necessary accurate assessments of Soviet worldwide military deployments, especially close to the Iron Curtain. Lockheed Aircraft Corporation’s subsonic U-2 (see NASM collection) reconnaissance aircraft was an able platform but the U. S. Air Force recognized that this fairly slow aircraft was already vulnerable to Soviet interceptors. They also understood that the fast development of surface-to-air missile systems could put U-two pilots at grave risk. The danger proved reality when a U-2 was shot down by a surface to air missile more than the Soviet Union in 1960.
Lockheed’s initial proposal for a new higher speed, higher altitude, reconnaissance aircraft, to be capable of avoiding interceptors and missiles, centered on a design and style propelled by liquid hydrogen. This proved to be impracticable simply because of considerable fuel consumption. Lockheed then reconfigured the style for standard fuels. This was feasible and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), currently flying the Lockheed U-two, issued a production contract for an aircraft designated the A-12. Lockheed’s clandestine ‘Skunk Works’ division (headed by the gifted design engineer Clarence L. "Kelly" Johnson) designed the A-12 to cruise at Mach three.two and fly well above 18,288 m (60,000 feet). To meet these challenging needs, Lockheed engineers overcame many daunting technical challenges. Flying far more than three occasions the speed of sound generates 316° C (600° F) temperatures on external aircraft surfaces, which are sufficient to melt traditional aluminum airframes. The design group chose to make the jet’s external skin of titanium alloy to which shielded the internal aluminum airframe. Two conventional, but really powerful, afterburning turbine engines propelled this exceptional aircraft. These energy plants had to operate across a huge speed envelope in flight, from a takeoff speed of 334 kph (207 mph) to much more than three,540 kph (2,200 mph). To avert supersonic shock waves from moving inside the engine intake causing flameouts, Johnson’s group had to design and style a complex air intake and bypass program for the engines.
Skunk Works engineers also optimized the A-12 cross-section design and style to exhibit a low radar profile. Lockheed hoped to obtain this by carefully shaping the airframe to reflect as small transmitted radar energy (radio waves) as feasible, and by application of special paint designed to absorb, rather than reflect, those waves. This remedy became one particular of the initial applications of stealth technology, but it never completely met the design goals.
Test pilot Lou Schalk flew the single-seat A-12 on April 24, 1962, right after he became airborne accidentally in the course of higher-speed taxi trials. The airplane showed excellent guarantee but it necessary considerable technical refinement prior to the CIA could fly the 1st operational sortie on Might 31, 1967 – a surveillance flight over North Vietnam. A-12s, flown by CIA pilots, operated as portion of the Air Force’s 1129th Special Activities Squadron beneath the "Oxcart" plan. While Lockheed continued to refine the A-12, the U. S. Air Force ordered an interceptor version of the aircraft designated the YF-12A. The Skunk Works, even so, proposed a "specific mission" version configured to conduct post-nuclear strike reconnaissance. This program evolved into the USAF’s familiar SR-71.
Lockheed built fifteen A-12s, like a specific two-seat trainer version. Two A-12s were modified to carry a special reconnaissance drone, designated D-21. The modified A-12s were redesignated M-21s. These have been developed to take off with the D-21 drone, powered by a Marquart ramjet engine mounted on a pylon in between the rudders. The M-21 then hauled the drone aloft and launched it at speeds high adequate to ignite the drone’s ramjet motor. Lockheed also constructed three YF-12As but this type never ever went into production. Two of the YF-12As crashed during testing. Only one survives and is on show at the USAF Museum in Dayton, Ohio. The aft section of a single of the "written off" YF-12As which was later employed along with an SR-71A static test airframe to manufacture the sole SR-71C trainer. 1 SR-71 was lent to NASA and designated YF-12C. Which includes the SR-71C and two SR-71B pilot trainers, Lockheed constructed thirty-two Blackbirds. The first SR-71 flew on December 22, 1964. Due to the fact of intense operational charges, military strategists decided that the a lot more capable USAF SR-71s must replace the CIA’s A-12s. These have been retired in 1968 following only a single year of operational missions, mostly more than southeast Asia. The Air Force’s 1st Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron (portion of the 9th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing) took over the missions, flying the SR-71 starting in the spring of 1968.
After the Air Force started to operate the SR-71, it acquired the official name Blackbird– for the unique black paint that covered the airplane. This paint was formulated to absorb radar signals, to radiate some of the tremendous airframe heat generated by air friction, and to camouflage the aircraft against the dark sky at high altitudes.
Experience gained from the A-12 system convinced the Air Force that flying the SR-71 safely essential two crew members, a pilot and a Reconnaissance Systems Officer (RSO). The RSO operated with the wide array of monitoring and defensive systems installed on the airplane. This equipment incorporated a sophisticated Electronic Counter Measures (ECM) system that could jam most acquisition and targeting radar. In addition to an array of advanced, higher-resolution cameras, the aircraft could also carry equipment made to record the strength, frequency, and wavelength of signals emitted by communications and sensor devices such as radar. The SR-71 was designed to fly deep into hostile territory, avoiding interception with its tremendous speed and higher altitude. It could operate safely at a maximum speed of Mach 3.3 at an altitude a lot more than sixteen miles, or 25,908 m (85,000 ft), above the earth. The crew had to wear stress suits comparable to these worn by astronauts. These suits have been necessary to protect the crew in the event of sudden cabin stress loss even though at operating altitudes.
To climb and cruise at supersonic speeds, the Blackbird’s Pratt & Whitney J-58 engines were created to operate constantly in afterburner. Even though this would appear to dictate high fuel flows, the Blackbird actually achieved its very best "gas mileage," in terms of air nautical miles per pound of fuel burned, in the course of the Mach three+ cruise. A typical Blackbird reconnaissance flight may possibly demand several aerial refueling operations from an airborne tanker. Every time the SR-71 refueled, the crew had to descend to the tanker’s altitude, usually about 6,000 m to 9,000 m (20,000 to 30,000 ft), and slow the airplane to subsonic speeds. As velocity decreased, so did frictional heat. This cooling effect caused the aircraft’s skin panels to shrink considerably, and those covering the fuel tanks contracted so significantly that fuel leaked, forming a distinctive vapor trail as the tanker topped off the Blackbird. As soon as the tanks have been filled, the jet’s crew disconnected from the tanker, relit the afterburners, and once again climbed to higher altitude.
Air Force pilots flew the SR-71 from Kadena AB, Japan, throughout its operational profession but other bases hosted Blackbird operations, also. The 9th SRW occasionally deployed from Beale AFB, California, to other places to carryout operational missions. Cuban missions have been flown directly from Beale. The SR-71 did not begin to operate in Europe till 1974, and then only temporarily. In 1982, when the U.S. Air Force based two aircraft at Royal Air Force Base Mildenhall to fly monitoring mission in Eastern Europe.
When the SR-71 became operational, orbiting reconnaissance satellites had already replaced manned aircraft to gather intelligence from sites deep inside Soviet territory. Satellites could not cover each and every geopolitical hotspot so the Blackbird remained a vital tool for global intelligence gathering. On several occasions, pilots and RSOs flying the SR-71 supplied info that proved important in formulating productive U. S. foreign policy. Blackbird crews provided important intelligence about the 1973 Yom Kippur War, the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and its aftermath, and pre- and post-strike imagery of the 1986 raid conducted by American air forces on Libya. In 1987, Kadena-primarily based SR-71 crews flew a quantity of missions over the Persian Gulf, revealing Iranian Silkworm missile batteries that threatened industrial shipping and American escort vessels.
As the efficiency of space-based surveillance systems grew, along with the effectiveness of ground-primarily based air defense networks, the Air Force started to drop enthusiasm for the expensive program and the 9th SRW ceased SR-71 operations in January 1990. Despite protests by military leaders, Congress revived the program in 1995. Continued wrangling over operating budgets, nonetheless, quickly led to final termination. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration retained two SR-71As and the one particular SR-71B for higher-speed research projects and flew these airplanes until 1999.
On March 6, 1990, the service career of a single Lockheed SR-71A Blackbird ended with a record-setting flight. This special airplane bore Air Force serial number 64-17972. Lt. Col. Ed Yeilding and his RSO, Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Vida, flew this aircraft from Los Angeles to Washington D.C. in 1 hour, four minutes, and 20 seconds, averaging a speed of three,418 kph (two,124 mph). At the conclusion of the flight, ‘972 landed at Dulles International Airport and taxied into the custody of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum. At that time, Lt. Col. Vida had logged 1,392.7 hours of flight time in Blackbirds, more than that of any other crewman.
This certain SR-71 was also flown by Tom Alison, a former National Air and Space Museum’s Chief of Collections Management. Flying with Detachment 1 at Kadena Air Force Base, Okinawa, Alison logged much more than a dozen ‘972 operational sorties. The aircraft spent twenty-four years in active Air Force service and accrued a total of two,801.1 hours of flight time.
Weight: 170,000 Lbs
Reference and Further Reading:
Crickmore, Paul F. Lockheed SR-71: The Secret Missions Exposed. Oxford: Osprey Publishing, 1996.
Francillon, Rene J. Lockheed Aircraft Because 1913. Annapolis, Md.: Naval Institute Press, 1987.
Johnson, Clarence L. Kelly: Far more Than My Share of It All. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1985.
Miller, Jay. Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Performs. Leicester, U.K.: Midland Counties Publishing Ltd., 1995.
Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird curatorial file, Aeronautics Division, National Air and Space Museum.
• • • • •
See more images of this, and the Wikipedia post.
Information, quoting from Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | Space Shuttle Enterprise:
Rockwell International Corporation
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Overall: 57 ft. tall x 122 ft. lengthy x 78 ft. wing span, 150,000 lb.
(1737.36 x 3718.57 x 2377.44cm, 68039.6kg)
Aluminum airframe and body with some fiberglass features payload bay doors are graphite epoxy composite thermal tiles are simulated (polyurethane foam) except for test samples of actual tiles and thermal blankets.
The 1st Space Shuttle orbiter, "Enterprise," is a complete-scale test vehicle utilized for flights in the atmosphere and tests on the ground it is not equipped for spaceflight. Although the airframe and flight manage elements are like those of the Shuttles flown in space, this car has no propulsion technique and only simulated thermal tiles because these characteristics had been not required for atmospheric and ground tests. "Enterprise" was rolled out at Rockwell International’s assembly facility in Palmdale, California, in 1976. In 1977, it entered service for a nine-month-long strategy-and-landing test flight system. Thereafter it was utilized for vibration tests and match checks at NASA centers, and it also appeared in the 1983 Paris Air Show and the 1984 World’s Fair in New Orleans. In 1985, NASA transferred "Enterprise" to the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum.
Transferred from National Aeronautics and Space Administration
• • •
Quoting from Wikipedia | Space Shuttle Enterprise:
The Space Shuttle Enterprise (NASA Orbiter Automobile Designation: OV-101) was the first Space Shuttle orbiter. It was constructed for NASA as part of the Space Shuttle plan to perform test flights in the atmosphere. It was constructed with no engines or a functional heat shield, and was consequently not capable of spaceflight.
Initially, Enterprise had been intended to be refitted for orbital flight, which would have produced it the second space shuttle to fly following Columbia. Nonetheless, for the duration of the building of Columbia, information of the final style changed, specifically with regard to the weight of the fuselage and wings. Refitting Enterprise for spaceflight would have involved dismantling the orbiter and returning the sections to subcontractors across the country. As this was an high-priced proposition, it was determined to be much less expensive to develop Challenger around a physique frame (STA-099) that had been created as a test article. Similarly, Enterprise was regarded as for refit to replace Challenger after the latter was destroyed, but Endeavour was built from structural spares rather.
Construction began on the initial orbiter on June four, 1974. Designated OV-101, it was originally planned to be named Constitution and unveiled on Constitution Day, September 17, 1976. A write-in campaign by Trekkies to President Gerald Ford asked that the orbiter be named following the Starship Enterprise, featured on the tv show Star Trek. Despite the fact that Ford did not mention the campaign, the president—who throughout Globe War II had served on the aircraft carrier USS Monterey (CVL-26) that served with USS Enterprise (CV-6)—said that he was "partial to the name" and overrode NASA officials.
The style of OV-101 was not the very same as that planned for OV-102, the very first flight model the tail was constructed differently, and it did not have the interfaces to mount OMS pods. A large number of subsystems—ranging from primary engines to radar equipment—were not installed on this automobile, but the capacity to add them in the future was retained. Alternatively of a thermal protection method, its surface was primarily fiberglass.
In mid-1976, the orbiter was used for ground vibration tests, allowing engineers to evaluate data from an actual flight automobile with theoretical models.
On September 17, 1976, Enterprise was rolled out of Rockwell’s plant at Palmdale, California. In recognition of its fictional namesake, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and most of the principal cast of the original series of Star Trek have been on hand at the dedication ceremony.
Method and landing tests (ALT)
Major article: Strategy and Landing Tests
On January 31, 1977, it was taken by road to Dryden Flight Investigation Center at Edwards Air Force Base, to begin operational testing.
Although at NASA Dryden, Enterprise was used by NASA for a selection of ground and flight tests intended to validate aspects of the shuttle program. The initial nine-month testing period was referred to by the acronym ALT, for "Approach and Landing Test". These tests incorporated a maiden "flight" on February 18, 1977 atop a Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) to measure structural loads and ground handling and braking characteristics of the mated method. Ground tests of all orbiter subsystems were carried out to verify functionality prior to atmospheric flight.
The mated Enterprise/SCA combination was then subjected to five test flights with Enterprise unmanned and unactivated. The objective of these test flights was to measure the flight traits of the mated combination. These tests have been followed with three test flights with Enterprise manned to test the shuttle flight control systems.
Enterprise underwent 5 cost-free flights exactly where the craft separated from the SCA and was landed below astronaut handle. These tests verified the flight traits of the orbiter design and style and were carried out beneath numerous aerodynamic and weight configurations. On the fifth and final glider flight, pilot-induced oscillation issues had been revealed, which had to be addressed just before the first orbital launch occurred.
On August 12, 1977, the space shuttle Enterprise flew on its personal for the initial time.
Preparation for STS-1
Following the ALT plan, Enterprise was ferried amongst a number of NASA facilities to configure the craft for vibration testing. In June 1979, it was mated with an external tank and solid rocket boosters (recognized as a boilerplate configuration) and tested in a launch configuration at Kennedy Space Center Launch Pad 39A.
With the completion of vital testing, Enterprise was partially disassembled to let particular elements to be reused in other shuttles, then underwent an international tour going to France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the U.S. states of California, Alabama, and Louisiana (during the 1984 Louisiana Globe Exposition). It was also utilised to fit-check the by no means-employed shuttle launch pad at Vandenberg AFB, California. Ultimately, on November 18, 1985, Enterprise was ferried to Washington, D.C., where it became home of the Smithsonian Institution.
Following the Challenger disaster, NASA regarded making use of Enterprise as a replacement. Even so refitting the shuttle with all of the essential equipment necessary for it to be utilized in space was regarded as, but instead it was decided to use spares constructed at the same time as Discovery and Atlantis to build Endeavour.
In 2003, after the breakup of Columbia in the course of re-entry, the Columbia Accident Investigation Board conducted tests at Southwest Analysis Institute, which utilized an air gun to shoot foam blocks of comparable size, mass and speed to that which struck Columbia at a test structure which mechanically replicated the orbiter wing major edge. They removed a fiberglass panel from Enterprise’s wing to execute evaluation of the material and attached it to the test structure, then shot a foam block at it. Whilst the panel was not broken as a result of the test, the impact was adequate to permanently deform a seal. As the reinforced carbon-carbon (RCC) panel on Columbia was two.5 instances weaker, this suggested that the RCC major edge would have been shattered. Extra tests on the fiberglass have been canceled in order not to threat damaging the test apparatus, and a panel from Discovery was tested to decide the effects of the foam on a similarly-aged RCC top edge. On July 7, 2003, a foam effect test developed a hole 41 cm by 42.5 cm (16.1 inches by 16.7 inches) in the protective RCC panel. The tests clearly demonstrated that a foam impact of the variety Columbia sustained could seriously breach the protective RCC panels on the wing top edge.
The board determined that the probable result in of the accident was that the foam effect caused a breach of a reinforced carbon-carbon panel along the major edge of Columbia’s left wing, allowing hot gases generated for the duration of re-entry to enter the wing and result in structural collapse. This caused Columbia to spin out of manage, breaking up with the loss of the complete crew.
Enterprise was stored at the Smithsonian’s hangar at Washington Dulles International Airport prior to it was restored and moved to the newly built Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum‘s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles International Airport, where it has been the centerpiece of the space collection. On April 12, 2011, NASA announced that Space Shuttle Discovery, the most traveled orbiter in the fleet, will be added to the collection when the Shuttle fleet is retired. When that occurs, Enterprise will be moved to the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum in New York City, to a newly constructed hangar adjacent to the museum. In preparation for the anticipated relocation, engineers evaluated the vehicle in early 2010 and determined that it was protected to fly on the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft as soon as once more.