Newsletter 14
Autumn 2006
Updated on 20Oct2006
Published by the Hawker Association
for the Members.
Contents © Hawker Association

Annual General Meeting
Beating the System
Boeing Training Systems
Camm Headstone Restored
Camm Memorial Service
Camm Tribute - Engineer
Camm Tribute - Private Man
Hawk News
Hawker People News
Hayward in Switzerland
Kingston Aviation Project
Once More into the Breach
Private Sea Harrier
Programme for 2006/7
RAF Harrier Story
Association Ties
Unfortunately Dave Scrimgeour's 10th May talk on the Tripartite Evaluation Squadron had to be postponed due to his short-term illness. However, Members were treated to a fascinating 'last minute' substitute presentation by the ever willing John Farley. It was a kind of aeronautical scrap-book of items collected by John and saved on Powerpoint.

There were 10 items starting with some RAE WW2 film of ditching trials of a Mustang model to determine the best technique. The models, launched by a falling-weight powered catapult, covering a range of speeds, flight path angles and angles of incidence, showed that the aircraft invariably dived under the water so bailing out was the best bet.

Next came film of the Sukhoi Su 27 with foreplanes performing at the 1989 Paris Air Show. There were 360 degree turns in 10 seconds, pulls to 90-110 deg alpha on the approach, a full 360 degree pitch manoeuvre at constant height, 90 degree alpha descents and full tail slides, all without the engine missing a beat! Apparently, an F-16 pilot watching was moved to shout "eject!" during the display.
Once More into the Breach...

top toptop
An aeromodelling interlude featured John's own electrically powered 5 ft span Zephyr, which flew beautifully, and a B-52, powered by 8 miniature gas turbines each costing £2000, which crashed spectacularly with great realism, including the pall of dense black smoke which so often accompanies full scale disasters. Fortunately the impact was inside the airfield boundary and noone was hurt.

John then explained his philosophy of safety and accidents. There are, said John, no 'acts of God' because God does not design, build, maintain and operate aircraft. Only people cause accidents; through pilot error, technical error (maintenance, design, manufacture) and operational error. Pilot error, the largest proportion of accidents, can be minimised by selection, training and good design. Ultimately by increasing automation the pilot can be eliminated!

A film of a helicopter trying to rescue a boat in trouble by towing showed it rotating on the towline straight into the sea, because the boat was waterlogged.

Film of smart weapons and the AV-8B+ in the Gulf War was followed by film of extreme engine testing. We saw fan blades being deliberately blown off to demonstrate blade containment, bird ingestion tests using 3 two-and-half pound birds at 160 kn for only a 3% loss of thrust, and rain ingestion testing with the engine swallowing 15,000 gallons of water per hour! Airline passengers in the audience felt much relieved.

VTOL history was represented by film of the Higton RAE control rig (see Newsletter No.11) which led to the specification for the Rolls-Royce TMR (Thrust Measuring Rig/Flying Bedstead) really designed for control system research. Initially flown by RR test pilot Capt. RT Shepherd, the bulk of the taxing and dangerous RAE flying was by Sq Ldr RA Harvey.
John's final selection covered the UK National Air Traffic Service (NATS) which copes with 26,000 aircraft per week, one flight every 16 seconds or 1.2 million flights per year. It's good to know that we are in safe hands when flying the airways.

During question time, when asked about the Su 27's remarkable engine handling, John noted that the aircraft had vortex generators on the nose pitot to nail the vortices so they don't alternate from side to side, and a the long, carefully shaped intake duct feeding a tolerant engine.

It would be an understatement to say that the audience was delighted with the substitute talk which had entertained, informed and given plenty of food for thought.