On 16th January 1991, the first manned USAF aircraft to fly into hostile Iraqi airspace were the F-117As of the 37th TFW based at the Tonpah Test Range Airfield in Nevada and led by Cot. Al Whitley. At approximately 1:30 am on 17th January 1991 the first bomb of Operation Desert Storm was dropped by an F-117A on an Iraqi telecommunications certer in Baghdad. In the early morning of that first attack, two squadrons of F-117As dropped approximately sixty 2,000 pound bombs on the headquarters of the Iraqi Air Force, SCUD missile bunkers, ammunition storage facilities and major Iraqi air defense, control and command facilities.
The F-117A is built mostly of aluminum and some titanium. The flat angles, or facets, help hide the aircraft from radar by reflecting the signal everywhere except back to the radar transmitter/reciever. To aid in it is invisibility the Stealth is covered with Radar Absorbent Material (RAM) which is the matted black finish you see. The F-117A is powered by two General Electric F404-GE-F1D2 engines with 12,000 pounds of thrust each which carry it to and estimated top speed of March 0.92. It carries all weapons internally, the most often used being the GBU-27A Paveway III Bombs.
The Multi-Stage Improvement Program (MSIP) is a joint program carried out by McDonnell Douglas(now Boeing) and the USAF. MSIP II is that portion of the program which handles the F-15C/D. The major part of MSIP II is to fit the APG-70 radar and the AIM-120 AMRAAM. The ECM equipment was improved, with ALR-56C RWR, ALQ-135B internal ECM system, and enhanced ALQ-128 being introduced.
The first MSIP II aircraft was F-15C 84-001, first flown on June 20, 1985. MSIP II was still underway at the time of the Desert Storm of 1991, and the AIM-120 was not yet ready for combat use. However, MSIP II F-15Cs were quickly despatched to the Gulf, and during the war they achieved an impressive kill ratio against Iraqi aircraft. After the Persian Gulf War, F-15C MSIP II operated in East Europe during Operation Allied Force, Afghanistan in Operation Enduring Freedom, Iraq in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Carrier-borne jet fighter development advanced at a brisk pace in the aftermath of WWII, but work on jet ground attack aircraft of similar capabilities did not, forcing the US Navy to rely on the propeller-driven A-1 Skyraider to carry out ground suppert/strike missions throughout the Korean War. While the Navy was fully aware of the necessity for new aircraft capable of performing these crucial missions, the appearance of the superlative Mig-15 in the Communist arsenal during the conflict required throwing virtually all military aviation design dfforts into coming up with a fighter capable of besting the Soviet-built fighter, leaving ver little left of the R+D pie for ground attack aircraft. However, once the urgency of the Korean situation diminished, the Navy was ready to move on with developments in this area, and in the early 1950s tasked the design team at Douglas Aircraft to come up with a next-generation carrier-borne ground attack plane.
Douglas, utilizing the newest in light aircraft design technology, came up with a proposal for a small jet weighing a mere 6.8s and with a wingspan of only 8.4 meters. Douglas ended up with a Navy contract, and the prototype made its maiden flight on June 22, 1954, featuring a superlight airframe and a layout emphasizing efficient and simple manufacture. For example, the main wing encompassed both left and right wings in a single structure mated to the fuselage for optimum strength and ease of construction. The fact that a total of 2,960 A-4 Skyhawks were built over the next 26 years until the production line closed in February 1979 attests to the excellence of the aircraft's design.
The A-4B(A4D-2) was an upgraded development of the earlier A-4A model, featuring a J65-W-16A powerplant, new positioning of targetting devices, a strengthened rear fuselage and a new power rudder. Another key improvement was the incorporation of an air-to-air refueling probe on the right side of the nose of the aircraft, enableing a significant increase in operational range. The A-4B went on line with active units starting in Septomber 1957.
Crew : one
Wingspan : 8.38m
Length : 12.01m
Height : 4.57m
Engine : Pratt & Whitney J65-W-16A(with thrust of 3,493kg)
Maximum speed : 1,064km/h(at sea level)
Fixed armament : 20mm cannon X 2
Maiden flight : March 26, 1956(A-4B)
The first practical air-cooled radial rotary engine for aircrafts was developed in 1909 by a French company, Gnome, using an idea of an American engineer.
This new 7 cylindered rotary engine had the power of 50 hp. With this new engine, France became the leader of the world's aviation technology in those days.
During the WWI, the three 9 cylindered models, Le Rhone 80-100 hp. Gnome Monosoupage 100 hp, and Clerget 9z 110 hp were manufactured in France, and many of them were exported as the light weighted but powerful aircraft engines. Those rotar engines were characterized with that the engine body itself worked as the fly-wheel and was powerful compared to its light weight. The engine cowling which was designed to prevent oil from splashing around the engine became an ideal nose fairing to reduce air resistance. Therefore, not only France but also England, Germany, USA and Italy used this type of engine for their newest fighters in the early stage of the WWI.
The Sopwith 1F. 1 Camel, built in 1917, was a small dog fighter equipped with the Clerget 9B 130 hp, and this excellent fighter soon became the main power of the Royal Air Force. The Clerget 9B 130 hp was an improved version of the 9Z originally designed by Clerget Blin & Cie in Paris, and was manufactured under licence at Gwynness factory of Hammersmith Iron Works in London. The sister models Clerget 9Z 110 hp and 9F 130hp were made in France, and the modified 9BF 140 hp was British-French made. There engines were used for many other British and French military aircrafts.
Power : 130 hp (at 1,250 r.p.m.)
Bore : 120 mm
Stroke : 160 mm
Weight : 172.8 kg
Weight/hp :1.33 kg
Max. diameter : 1,022 mm
Overall length : 711 mm
The idea of an air cooled rotary radial engine whose shole body works like a fly wheel is said to have been invented in 1887 by an Australian engineer, Lawrence Hargrave. This idea was realized as an aircraft engine by M. Laurent Seguin in 1907.
This first production model, built during from 1909 to 1910, was the 7 cylindered Gnome Model Omega 50 hp/1,200rpm.
In 1913, Gnome et Rhone completed an improved version, 9 cylindered Model C, 80 hp/1,200rpm. This new rotary engine, so called Le Rhone 80hp, was apprecianted as the best aircraft engine in the world those days. It had smoother rotation and lighter weight than other 4 to 6 cylindered water cooled and 7 to 9 cylindered fixed radial engines.
This 80hp engine was then manufactured by Gnome & Le Rhone Engine Company established in England and by Italian Motori Gnome & Rhone Company in Italy and in the USA General Vehicle Company began production under licence.
While in Germany, Oberursel Motoren Company obtained the licence before the War, and designed a 7 cylindered 80hp engine.
This engine was then developed into each model of the 9 cylindered 110hp, the double row 14 cylindered 160hp, and finally the double row 18 cylindered 200hp engine.
The deep black of a moonless night shielded a small gunboat form detection. Silently, it crept through the dark waters of the Persian Fulf, seeking to attack any foreign oil tanker unfortunate enough to pass near enough on its journey through the guarded watchmen on board the oil tankers plying the gulf during this tense period in time. They could hit the defenseless tankers and escape without detection, imflicting severe damage on the giant ships with little risk to themselves.
Suddenly, and without any warning, the little gunboat erupted in a violent explosion, a victim of the very element of surprise the hapless crew was relying on for their successful raid. Although they never knew, they were the first victims of modern stealth technology. For only a mile away, another "invisible" craft had been observaing everything the unsuspecting gunboat and its crew had been doing. The MH-6 Night Hawk had struck!
This was the first reported incident in which "stealth" aircraft had been officially acknowledged by the U.S. and operated in a combat situation. A short time later, the scenario was repeated again, and three Iranian gunboats would no longer offer any threat to the heavily-laden tankers.
Essentially, the MH-6 is a development of the popular MD-500 Defender helicopter, a variant of the potent little Hughes OH-6A Cayuse used in Vietnam. Performance characteristics of the stealth version are the same as the standard military type. The MH-6 can carry nearly every combination of weapons used on any American combat helicopter. However, the sectet of the Night Hawk is its "invisibility paint", a thick, dull black coating that contains microscopic metal balls. This paint both absorbs and deflects radar waves so there will be no tell-tale image on an enemy's radar screen. In addition, anew-technology engine silencer and "quiet" rotor make the MH-6 nearly as silent as the night through which it travels. From a distance of only a mile, it is undetected by the enemy, while its advance fire control system locates, tracks and destroys the enemy.
This tiny machine is only 23 long, about the size of a modern pick-up truck, but its load is far more potent. The model depicted by this kit is a replica of the MH-6 described in the scenario above. It was the first "stealth" aircraft to be unveiled to the public and was displayed at the 1988 Edwards AFB open house, where the data for this minicraft/Academy model was gathered
The IDF(Israeli Defence Force) was the world's largest user of Sherman tanks. The first Sherman that entered service in the IDF was an M4A1 and A2 models which was served British Army during World War II. After the independence War in 1948, more Shermans were purchased from many countries. In 1945, France delivered hundred of M4A1s fitted with VVSS(Vertical Volute Spring Suspension) and long Barreled 76.2mm guns. And some tanks equipped newly E8 HVSS(Horizontal Volute Spring Suspension). They were renamed M1 Super Sherman by IDF. Upgraded M50 Super Shermans were developed in the 1960s. M50 has French 75mm CN75-50 Tank gun in modified turret and many other improvements. M50 Super Shermans were used for many years and saw combat on several occasions. To keep up with improved Soviet tanks supplied to the various Arab armies, Israel fielded the ultimate Sherman tank know as the M51 Super Sherman(I-Sherman). Armed with a French-designed 105mm CN105-F1 56 gun. The Sherman model chosen for this conversion was the cast hulls of M4A1. They were stripped back to their hulls, fitted with a Cummins 460 hp diesel engine, E8 HVSS suspension and modified steering, transmission and exhaust, wider tracks and a new turret mantlet and turret bustle. Other improvements included fitting a white light/infra-red searchlight over the main gun and two smoke-dischargers eigher side of the turret. The maximum road speed is 45 km/h and operational range is 270km. The M51 was first used operationally in the border conflict with Syria, prior to being used in the subsequent 1967 Six Day War and the 1973 Yom Kippur War, in which it successfully engaged soviet T-55 and T-62 MBTs used by Egypt and Syria. Following the Six Day War the regular armored units were re-equipped with more modern MBTs-Centurion and M48/60, allowing the M1/M50/M51 series to be transferred to the reserve mechanized brigades and border defence units. It is known that Chille taken delivery of a number of M51s from Istael. The remainder of the older M51s were then reworked into a variety of specialized versions.
In 1951, the Ford Motor Company was given a contract a MUTT(Military Utility Tactical Truck) to replace the WWII era MB Jeep and it's descendant of the M38. This new 1/4 ton 4WD vehicle would introduce new technologies such as a Uni-body Chassis and all wheel independent suspension system to the heep type vehicle. In 1960, the first production contract was signed to produce over 10,000 units, and it would be used by whole U.S army and many other foreign military forces. The production of the M151 was not continued for a long time. It is because M151 had a serious problem with the suspension that made the M151 unstable and give a possibility to roll-over in the tight cornering situation. In order to provide the infantry with heavier fire-power, US and many other countries mounted recoilless rifle and missile system in the small trucks and APCs. In the 1960's, Hughes Aircraft Company developed the BGM-77A or TOW(Tube launched, Optically tracked, Wire guided) missile system to replace earlier generation weapons, This system was designed as a Heavy Anti-Tank Weapon to engage targets at range from 62m to 3700m. This Heavy Anti-Tank Weapon doubled the fire-power of the M40A2 106mm recoilless rifle. The mounting system of the M232E1 1/4 ton consisted of the launcher and M220 Optical Tracking System mounted on a fixed pedestal with a control box secured to the floor next to it. The M151 also carried two spare missiles and a tripod mount that allowed the launcher and tracking system to be deployed at some distant from the vehicle.
With a nickname "Warthog", it's quite clear the Fair child A-10 is not a pretty aircraft! However, beauty was not a part of the concept behind this formidable attack plane. Mounted in its nose is one of the deadliest weapons eber to cruise the skies. Called the GAU-8/A Avenger, it is a 30mm cannon capable of firing up to 70 rounds of heavy ammunition per second! With a muzzle velocity of 3/4 mile in one second, the shell is intended to penetrate even the strongest tank hull. The A-10, officially called the Thunderbolt II, was actually designed around the big cannon. The strange looking shape of the A-10 was a result of trying to provide as much protection for the pilot as possible. for example, the twin turbofan engines are mounted between the wings and stabilizers to protect them from debris and to shield the infrared signature of the exhaust from heat-sensing missiles. The pilot rides in an armored "bucket" and the plane is designed to return to base even though seriously damaged. Another means of survivability is the grat maneuverability of the A-10. It can turn quickly and sharply, even evading radardirected guns. At 172 mph the plane can turn within a tight 900 foot circle. At 650 mph it can turn within 1200 feet. A-10 are intended to operate in pairs, their first targets being anti aircraft weapons. For the planes carry AGM-65 Mavericks, a self guiding cissile which seeks out it targets. Then the big cannon is used to destroy any unfortunate armor in the area. The A-10 carry up to eight tons of weapons on eight wing and three fuselage pylons. Fully loadedm the Thunderbolt II has a maximum speed of 423 mph. It is a large plane, with a wingspan of 57 feet 6 inches and is powered with a pair of General Electric TF34 engines producing 9,065 lbs thrust each.