The Aviation Thread [Contains Lots of Awesome Pictures]

NecroJoe

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And this even though he never got around to explaining the Xs in LAX and PDX.
If I had to guess, are they old codes from before there was a 3-letter standard? Did they just plop an "x" at the end of the old ones because it was quick, easy, and didn't have to re-insert those cities into the "logical" 3-letter race/competition?

My grandpa used to have a 2-digit phone number prefix, and at one point they went to three. And to do it, they added a 9 in the front. But his old prefix was 11. So his new prefix was 911. I'll note, though, that this was just a historic curiosity as it was decades before "911" became a thing, so there were no issues at the time, and it was replaced be a new prefix eventually before there was any conflicts.
 

calvinhobbes

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If I had to guess, are they old codes from before there was a 3-letter standard? Did they just plop an "x" at the end of the old ones because it was quick, easy, and didn't have to re-insert those cities into the "logical" 3-letter race/competition?

In a word: yes. To me, those two-letter codes seem like a leftover from the era when they used large concrete arrows on the ground to literally point pilots in the right direction. I’m probably years off, but any reminder of this long history delights my inner geek.

 
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Blind_Io

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I think it's just a placeholder character.
 

Blind_Io

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The iconic Blackhawk helicopter is being phased into retirement. The Future Long range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) contract has just been awarded to Bell and their V-280 "Valor" design over the coaxial helicopter presented by the Sikorsky and Boeing team. The Valor has a range of just over 2,800 miles.

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1670348951751.png
 

NecroJoe

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Hasn't the similar (at least in rough concept) Osprey had a sketchy safety record? If so, is there something about this design that makes is superior in that regard, aside just evolved control tech, and easier maintenance due to the fixed engine position (where as the Osprey, the engine tilted with the rotors).
 

leviathan

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Osprey had a sketchy first few years until some kinks were worked out, and has gained something of a notoriety with the general public, but since then it's apparently become the safest rotorcraft by personnel-miles flown in the US fleet.

Aside from that, the Valor is much simpler. Engines not tilting improves reliability immensely - no need to account for different orientations to make sure various fluids go where they need to go and stay there, and as a bonus your exhaust doesn't singe the landing pad (apparently a big issue with various state property lawns when the Osprey is used). No complex wing-folding mechanics - the Osprey is a damn origami piece, look up a video of how it folds up on a carrier, it's straight out of Transformers. That and much more modern control tech, plus all the lessons learned early on the Osprey going into the design - all in all much more likely to be more reliable. But time will tell.
 

NecroJoe

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Osprey had a sketchy first few years until some kinks were worked out, and has gained something of a notoriety with the general public, but since then it's apparently become the safest rotorcraft by personnel-miles flown in the US fleet.

Ahh, OK. I think the fatal crashes that made the news must have stuck out more in my head simply because the craft itself is so memorable, and one of the few I could identify in a lineup.

No complex wing-folding mechanics - the Osprey is a damn origami piece, look up a video of how it folds up on a carrier, it's straight out of Transformers.
Yeah, I've seen them on train trailers folded up and was surprised to see this new version doesn't have that feature.

Apparently, a rotating wing assembly was at least considered at one point. Not sure if it ever made it out of "model" stage, though...and honestly this may not even by an "official" model of any sort...just something I stumbled upon.

1670367763741.png
 

jack_christie

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More on the V280


 

jack_christie

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HeavyD just collected his BlackHawk:

 

Blind_Io

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Aviation-adjacent.


PXL_20221207_001902037.jpg

"Lend me a stick of Beeman's, would ya?"

I was surprised to see this at my local store
 

GRtak

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Speaking of new aircraft.


 

NecroJoe

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I got to see one of the current version in the sky, from the ground. Seeing it broke my brain, even though I've been aware of the craft since it was released, and have seen countless photos.
 

Blind_Io

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1670523460968.png
 

GRtak

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Blind_Io

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Found on Reddit and I had to post it here.

'Twas the Night Before Christmas (for pilots!)


Twas the night before Christmas, and out on the ramp, Not an airplane was stirring, not even a Champ. The aircraft were fastened to tie downs with care, In hopes that — come morning — they all would be there. The fuel trucks were nestled, all snug in their spots, With gusts from two-forty at 39 knots. I slumped at the fuel desk, now finally caught up, And settled down comfortably, resting my butt.
When the radio lit up with noise and with chatter, I turned up the scanner to see what was the matter. A voice clearly heard over static and snow, Called for clearance to land at the airport below. He barked his transmission so lively and quick, I’d have sworn that the call sign he used was “St. Nick.”
I ran to the panel to turn up the lights, The better to welcome this magical flight. He called his position, no room for denial, “St. Nicholas One, turnin’ left onto final.” And what to my wondering eyes should appear, But a Rutan-built sleigh, with eight Rotax Reindeer! With vectors to final, down the glide slope he came, As he passed all fixes, he called them by name: “Now Ringo! Now Tolga! Now Trini and Bacun! On Comet! On Cupid!” What pills was he takin’? While controllers were sittin’, and scratchin’ their heads, They phoned to my office, and I heard it with dread, The message they left was both urgent and dour: “When Santa pulls in, have him please call the tower.”
He landed like silk, with the sled runners sparking, Then I heard, “Left at Charlie,” and “Taxi to parking.” He slowed to a taxi, turned off of three-oh, And stopped on the ramp with a “Ho, ho-ho-ho…” He stepped out of the sleigh, but before he could talk, I ran out to meet him with my best set of chocks. His red helmet and goggles were covered with frost, And his beard was all blackened from Reindeer exhaust. His breath smelled like peppermint, gone slightly stale, And he puffed on a pipe, but he didn’t inhale. His cheeks were all rosy and jiggled like jelly, His boots were as black as a cropduster’s belly. He was chubby and plump, in his suit of bright red, And he asked me to “fill it, with hundred low-lead.”
He came dashing in from the snow-covered pump, I knew he was anxious for drainin’ the sump. I spoke not a word, but went straight to my work, And I filled up the sleigh, but I spilled like a jerk. He came out of the restroom, and sighed in relief, Then he picked up a phone for a Flight Service brief. And I thought as he silently scribed in his log, These reindeer could land in an eighth-mile fog.
He completed his pre-flight, from the front to the rear, Then he put on his headset, and I heard him yell, “Clear!” And laying a finger on his push-to-talk, He called up the tower for clearance and squawk. “Take taxiway Charlie, the southbound direction, Turn right three-two-zero at pilot’s discretion” He sped down the runway, the best of the best, “Your traffic’s a Grumman, inbound from the west.” Then I heard him proclaim, as he climbed through the night, “Merry Christmas to all! I have traffic in sight.”
 

RdKetchup

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Reminds me of the joke, "Due to social distancing requirements, the Navy just announced that the Blue Angels will have to stop flying demonstrations.

When inquired, the Air Force responded that the Thunderbirds demonstrations were not affected..."
 

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RdKetchup

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Sikorsky is protesting the Blackhawk replacement contract that was awarded Bell.

I'm of course not placed to say who should win that contract, but I would really like Sikorsky to win the protest and the contract.

I've always been fascinated by contrarotating rotor technology, and would like to see this new rigid one get developed fully.

And to see the pusher prop succeed after the AH-56 Cheyenne program failure.
 
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