The Boeing FB was the US Navy's version of the Boeing PW-9 biplane fighter and the first in a decade-long series of Boeing naval fighters.
Boeing had gained valuable experience building other people's fighters, most importantly the Thomas-Morse MB-3A. The company decided to begin developing their own single-seat fighter as a private venture, giving it the internal designation of Boeing Model 15.
The Model 15 was a single-bay biplane with wings of unequal span. The lower wing had a reduced span and chord. Both wings were tapered. The wings had a wooden structure with a fabric covering while the fuselage had a welded steel tube fuselage, also with a fabric covering. It had a braced tail unit with a variable-incidence tail-plane that could be controlled in flight. Three prototypes were produced - two with through-axle main landing gear and one with split axle landing gear. It was powered by a 435hp Curtiss D-12 inline engine.
The Model 15 made its maiden flight on 2 June 1923 with Captain Frank Tyndall at the controls. It was given the Air Corps designation XPW-9, and after early tests at the Boeing factory was sent to the Army for trials. The Army ordered two more prototypes on 28 September 1923, and these were delivered on 1 May 1924.
The US Navy was also interested in the new fighter. Early in 1925 the Navy ordered sixteen Model 15s, giving them the designation Boeing FB-1. The first of these aircraft was delivered on 1 December 1925, but only 10 of the 16 were completed as FB-1s. The FB-1 was almost identical to the Army PW-1, with the same split axle undercarriage. They were not equipped for carrier use, and instead went to the US Marine Corps.
Nine of the ten FB-1s were deployed to China as part of the USMC Expeditionary Force that was sent in June 1928 to help protect the International Settlement in Shanghai at a time of increasing anti-foreign sentiment in China.
Boeing FB-2 (Boeing Model 53)
The 11th and 12th aircraft from the original Naval order were completed as the Boeing FB-2 or Model 53. These aircraft had carrier deck guide wire hooks installed to allow them to be used from carriers. They also had a stronger fuselage and a cross-axle undercarriage.
Boeing FB-3 (Boeing Model 55)
The 13th aircraft from the original order was completed as the FB-3 (Model 55). Another two FB-3s were ordered later. The FB-3 could use twin floats and had hoisting gear. Like the FB-2 they were designed for carrier operations. They had a change of engine, to the 510hp Packard 1A-1500, and used the same split-axle undercarriage as the FB-1 rather than the cross-axle type used on the FB-2. The first FB-3 was destroyed in a crash on Lake Washington in December 1925. The second and third aircraft were delivered in April 1926 and used as development aircraft. One of the changes made was the introduction of larger balanced rudders. This design later became standard for the entire PW-9/ FB-3 family of fighters.
Boeing FB-4 (Boeing Model 54)
The FB-4 (Model 54) was the 14th aircraft from the original Naval order. Like the FB-2 it could use twin floats. It also had the equipment to be hoisted mounted on the upper wing, but the most important change was the use of a 450hp Wright P-1 Radial engine. This engine would later evolve into the Wright Cyclone. The FB-4 was delivered to the Navy in January 1926. Tests with the FB-4 suggested that radial engines would be better suited for carrier operations than inline engines, but also that the Wright engine wasn't suitable for use on a fighter aircraft. The FB-4 was re-engined with a Pratt & Whitney Wasp and redesignated as the FB-6.
Boeing FB-5 (Boeing Model 67)
The FB-5 was the main naval production version of the FB family. Twenty seven were ordered. The FB-5 saw a number of changes made to the design. They used a 520hp Packard 2A-1500 engine. The wing stagger was significantly increased, with the upper wing moved forward and the lower wing moved back. The undercarriage had to be redesigned to make sure it still joined up with the wing structure. The first FB-5 made its maiden flight on 7 October 1926.
The entire production run was delivered to the Navy on 21 January 1927. They were shipped by barge from the Boeing factory to the carrier USS Langley, waiting in Seattle Harbour, and most made their maiden flights from a carrier.
The FB-5 was used to equip VF-1B and VF-6B on the Langley and VG-3B on the Lexington. They were also used by Marine Squadron VF-6M, based at San Diego.
The FB-5 was retired after only two years of service because of the Navy's decision to standardise on radial engines.
Boeing FB-6 (Boeing Model 54)
After undergoing Naval tests the sole FB-4 was re-engined with a 400hp Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial engine and given the FB-6 designation. The new engine was less powerful than the Wright P-1, but was also much lighter and the FB-6 had the same performance as the FB-4. Tests with the FB-6 convinced the Navy that it should standardize on radial engined aircraft - they were seen as more robust and easier to maintain in the limited space on carriers. In 1928 the majority of inline-engine powered aircraft were withdrawn from Naval service.
Boeing FB-7 (Boeing Model 67A)
The Boeing FB-7 (Model 67A) was to have been a version of the FB-7 powered by the Pratt & Whitney Wasp engine. The project was abandoned in favour of the Model 69, which entered service as the Boeing F2B-1.
Boeing FB-5 (Model 67)
Engine: Packard 2A-1500 inline piston engine
Span: 32ft 0in
Length: 23ft 9in
Height: 9ft 5in
Empty Weight: 2,458lb
Maximum Take-off Weight: 3,249lb
Maximum Speed: 176mph at sea level
Cruising Speed: 150mph
Climb rate: 2,100ft/ min
Range: 420 miles
Guns: Two fixed forward firing 0.3in Browning machine-guns
General Dynamics F-111 Aardvark
The General Dynamics F-111 Aardvark is a retired American supersonic, medium-range interdictor and tactical attack aircraft that also filled the roles of strategic nuclear bomber, aerial reconnaissance, and electronic-warfare aircraft in its various versions. The word "aardvark" is Afrikaans for "earth pig" and reflects the look of the long nose of the aircraft that might remind one of the nose of the aardvark. Developed in the 1960s by General Dynamics, it entered service in 1967 with the United States Air Force (USAF). The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) also ordered the type and began operating F-111Cs in 1973.
|Air-to-air refueling mission over the North Sea|
|Role||Interdictor, tactical attack aircraft |
and strategic bomber
|National origin||United States|
|First flight||21 December 1964 56 years ago ( 1964-12-21 )|
|Introduction||18 July 1967 53 years ago ( 1967-07-18 )|
|Retired||USAF: F-111F, 1996 EF-111A, 1998 |
RAAF: F-111C, 2010
|Primary users||United States Air Force (USAF)|
Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF)
|Number built||563 |
|Variants||General Dynamics–Grumman F-111B |
General Dynamics F-111C
General Dynamics–Grumman EF-111A Raven
General Dynamics F-111K
General Dynamics–Boeing AFTI/F-111A Aardvark
The F-111 pioneered several technologies for production aircraft, including variable-sweep wings, afterburning turbofan engines, and automated terrain-following radar for low-level, high-speed flight. Its design influenced later variable-sweep wing aircraft, and some of its advanced features have since become commonplace. The F-111 suffered a variety of problems during initial development. Several of its intended roles, such as an aircraft carrier-based naval interceptor with the F-111B, failed to materialize.
USAF F-111s were retired during the 1990s with the F-111Fs in 1996 and EF-111s in 1998. The F-111 was replaced in USAF service by the F-15E Strike Eagle for medium-range precision strike missions, while the supersonic bomber role has been assumed by the B-1B Lancer. The RAAF was the last operator of the F-111, with its aircraft serving until December 2010.
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The Boeing Company, together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, sales, services, and supports commercial jetliners, military aircraft, satellites, missile defense, human space flight and launch systems, and services worldwide. The company operates through four segments: Commercial Airplanes Defense, Space & Security Global Services and Boeing Capital. The Commercial Airplanes segment provides commercial jet aircraft for passenger and cargo requirements, as well as fleet support services. The Defense, Space & Security segment engages in the research, development, production, and modification of manned and unmanned military aircraft and weapons systems strategic defense and intelligence systems, which include strategic missile and defense systems, command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, cyber and information solutions, and intelligence systems and satellite systems, such as government and commercial satellites, and space exploration. The Global Services segment offers products and services, including supply chain and logistics management, engineering, maintenance and modifications, upgrades and conversions, spare parts, pilot and maintenance training systems and services, technical and maintenance documents, and data analytics and digital services to commercial and defense customers. The Boeing Capital segment offers financing services and manages financing exposure for a portfolio of equipment under operating and finance leases, notes and other receivables, assets held for sale or re-lease, and investments. The company was founded in 1916 and is based in Chicago, Illinois.
William Boeing: The Story of a Visionary Aircraft Manufacturer
William Boeing was a visionary entrepreneur and pioneer in the field of aircraft manufacturing. Guided by his steady hand, a small airplane manufacturing company was able to grow into a massive corporation, engaged in a number of related industries. And though legislation after the Great Depression forced him to disperse the corporation and sell his interests in the Boeing Airplane Company, he never lost his passion for aviation. During World War 2, he continued to consult with the company that bore his name and lived long enough to see that company enter the jet age. William Boeing has been described as both private, and a perfectionist who insisted on getting the facts straight. Outside his office, on the wall, was a placard that read:
1. There is no authority except facts.
2. Facts are obtained by accurate observation.
3. Deductions are to be made only from facts.
4. Experience has proved the truth of these rules.”
The Early Life and Background of William Boeing
William Edward Boeing was born on October 1st, 1881, in Detroit, Michigan.
His father, Wilhelm, came from a respected and well-to-do German family. However, at the age of 20, after serving a year in the German military, young Wilhelm decided he was going to leave his hometown in Hohenlimburg and emigrate to the United States to seek adventure and his fortune. He found work as a farm laborer, but soon met and joined forces with Karl Ortmann, a lumberman, and his future father-in-law. Wilhelm bought a large section of timberland, and the associated mineral rights, in Minnesota’s Mesabi Range, the first of many such purchases that established him as a timber and mining baron. He also held positions as the director of the Peoples Savings Bank, president of the Galvin Brass and Iron Works, and a shareholder in the Standard Life Insurance Company.
Wilhelm Boeing, 1880
Tragically, Wilhelm died of influenza in 1890, at age 42. He left behind his wife Marie, and three children, of whom the eight year old William Edward was the oldest. Marie eventually remarried, taking on the name of Owsley, and it is said that William had a strained relationship with his father-in-law. William was sent overseas to attend school in Vevey, Switzerland, but after a year, he returned to the United States and continued his education in both public and private schools.
William attended the Sheffield Scientific School at Yale from 1899 to 1902 but did not graduate. In 1903, he decided to leave college and travel West, to Grays Harbor, Washington. Here, starting with land he inherited, William taught himself the logging business and began building a new fortune. He was successful and began purchasing more timberland and financing expeditions into the surrounding areas, including Alaska. In 1908, ready to expand his business, William moved to Seattle and established the Greenwood Timber Company. In 1910, after developing a taste for boating, he bought the Heath Shipyard on the Duwamish River.
William Boeing Discovers the World of Aviation
My firm conviction from the start has been that science and hard work can lick what appear to be insurmountable difficulties. I’ve tried to make the men around me feel, as I do, that we are embarked as pioneers upon a new science and industry in which our problems are so new and unusual that it behooves no one to dismiss any novel idea with the statement that it can’t be done. – William Boeing
It was around this time that William was first introduced to airplanes. In 1909, during the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition held in Seattle, he saw a manned airplane fly for the first time. This sparked a fascination with aircraft, and in 1910, he traveled south to attend the Los Angeles International Airmeet, the first major air show in the US. Here, he approached most of the aviators asking for a ride and was turned down by all of them but French aviator Louis Paulhan. Boeing waited for three days for the promised ride, before learning that Paulhan had already left the meet, moving on to give an exhibition in Salt Lake City, Utah. Many consider the ride that Paulhan didn’t give William Boeing to be the greatest missed opportunity of his life.
Four years after his visit to Los Angeles, William was introduced to US Navy Lieutenant Conrad Westervelt. They became fast friends and later that year, both finally had the opportunity to experience flying in a Curtiss-type hydroplane, piloted by Terah Maroney. They took turns flying above Lake Washington with Maroney, and afterward, decided that they could build a better airplane.
William began exchanging information with other aviators and eventually figured the first step was to learn to fly himself. He applied to the Glenn L. Martin School in Los Angeles for training and began taking a course there in August of 1915. After completing the course, he ordered a plane from the Martin factory known as the Model TA.
The machine was delivered to me in October of 1915, and, being convinced that there was a definite future in aviation, I became interested in the construction as well as the flying of aircraft. Enlisting a group of technical assistants, less than a dozen men in all, work was begun in designing the first Boeing plane. -William Boeing
Original Boeing location on shores of Lake Union.
During that time, William and his small group were working out of a combined factory and hangar space located on the shore of Lake Union. On June 15th, 1916, they made a test flight of the first Boeing plane, a seaplane / biplane officially called the B&W Model 1 (the initials referred to Boeing and Westervelt), but affectionately referred to as Bluebill. This aircraft, roughly 26 feet long, flew for 900 feet on the first flight. Though they may not have known it at the time, this was the birth of what would become one of the world’s largest aerospace companies.
The Boeing Airplane Company
It is a matter of great pride and satisfaction to me to realize that within the short space of 12 years, an infant company with a personnel of less than a dozen men, has grown to be the largest plant in America, devoted solely to the manufacture of aircraft, and at the present time employing approximately 1,000 men. – William Boeing
A month later, on July 15th, 1916, William Boeing and Conrad Westervelt founded Pacific Aero Products. Later that year, Westervelt, still serving in the US Navy, was transferred to the east coast. He left his position at Pacific Aero Products but sensing that it was becoming more and more likely the US would become directly involved in World War 1, he pushed William to apply for government contracts to supply the Navy with seaplanes. William was able to secure the contract, but he was missing a key part of the aircraft manufacturing process: He needed engineers.
In a clever move, Boeing addressed this problem by offering to build a wind tunnel for the University of Washington if, in return, they would establish a course for aeronautical engineering and send the most qualified graduates to Pacific Aero Products.
Shortly after the US officially joined the war, William decided to change the name of the business, and on May 9th, 1917, Pacific Aero Products became known as Boeing Airplane Company. Boeing shipped two new Model Cs to Pensacola, Florida, where they were demoed for the Navy. The Navy was impressed enough that they ordered an additional 50 Model Cs. In order to meet this demand, the company moved into the facilities at the Heath Shipyard, which became known as Boeing Plant 1.
After World War 1 came to a close, Boeing’s government contracts were canceled, and the aviation industry as a whole came to a near-standstill. This was in part because a surplus of cheap, used military aircraft flooded the market, and many aircraft manufacturers, including Boeing, were unable to sell new aircraft. In order to survive and keep from closing, Boeing was forced to diversify, and start selling, among other things, furniture, counter tops, phonograph cases and flat-bottomed boats called “Sea Sleds.”
It wasn’t long, however, before William found a new path for his company. Airmail was in its infancy, and former Army pilot Eddie Hubbard approached William with the idea of starting an international airmail route between Seattle and British Columbia. The government agreed to a trial period, and on March 3rd, 1919, Boeing made their first international air mail delivery. Though it was a success, after the trial period ended, some of William’s advisors convinced him to pass on the contract and re-focus instead on building airplanes. William, in turn, convinced Hubbard that he should pursue the contract.
William Boeing in 1920
By 1921, Boeing Airplane Company started to show a profit from both repairing military aircraft and designing and building new ones. Over the next decade, Boeing would become a leading manufacturer of fighter airplanes. As his company started experiencing new success, so did William personally, as he met and married Bertha Potter Paschall in 1921.
In 1925, legislation passed that opened air mail contracts to the public, and in 1927, Hubbard again approached William and convinced him to bid on the route between San Francisco and Chicago. In a move displaying incredible foresight, he was able to win the bid for the contract by deciding to use an air-cooled engine rather than a traditional water-cooled engine in Boeing’s Model 40A mailplanes.
The contract required William to have 26 airplanes in service by July 1st, 1927, and in order to accomplish this, he provided a $500,000 bond drawn from his own personal money. The Model 40A, in addition to carrying mail, also had an enclosed cabin that could carry two passengers. So for this venture, William founded a new business, an airline company called Boeing Air Transport. In the first year of operation, BAT delivered an estimated 1,300 tons of mail and carried 6,000 passengers. In 1929, William acquired Pacific Air Transport and merged it with Boeing Airplane Company and Boeing Air Transport. The resulting company was called United Aircraft and Transport Corporation, and in 1929, they acquired engine manufacturer Pratt and Whitney, Hamilton Standard Propeller Company, Chance Vought, and later in 1930, National Air Transport.
This mega corporation appeared set to rule the aviation industry until the US government stepped in. Accusing William Boeing of developing a monopoly, the government passed the Air Mail Act on June 12th, 1934, which, among other things, forced aviation companies to separate airline operations from development and manufacturing. William was forced to split United Aircraft and Transport Corporation into three separate entities. They were:
- United Aircraft Corporation, which handled manufacturing in the eastern US, and is now United Technologies Corporation.
- Boeing Airplane Company, which handled manufacturing in the western US, and is now The Boeing Company. , which took over the airline operations.
Retirement from Aviation
After his company was split into the different entities, Boeing resigned as the chairman and sold his stock. Shortly after this, on June 20th, 1934, he was awarded the Daniel Guggenheim Medal for aeronautical achievement.
Now that I am retiring from active service in aircraft manufacturing and air transportation, to be so greatly honored as to be recipient of the Daniel Guggenheim Medal is a real climax of my life. As the past years devoted to aircraft activities have been filled with real romance, the many forward projects now in the making will continue to keep me on the sidelines as a keen and interested observer. – William Boeing
After this, William began devoting most of his time to other pursuits, such as breeding racehorses. He did, however, keep his promise to stay in touch with friends and colleagues in the aviation industry. He served as an advisor to Boeing Airplane Company during World War 2, and was on hand again in 1954 for the rollout of the “Dash-80.” This became known as the Boeing 707, Boeing Airplane Company’s first jet airliner, and the first commercially successful jet airliner.
On September 28, 1956, William Boeing suffered a heart attack while onboard his yacht Taconite and was declared dead on arrival. He was 74 years old, just three days away from his 75th birthday. No formal funeral was held, and his family scattered his ashes into the sea off the coast of British Columbia, where he spent much of his time sailing.
On December 15th, 1966, William Boeing was inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame in Dayton, Ohio, “for outstanding contributions to aviation by his successful organization of a network of airline routes and the production of vitally important military and commercial aircraft.”
William Boeing and Eddie Hubbard after flying the first international mail route.
A Boeing Code Leak Exposes Security Flaws Deep in a 787's Guts
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Late one night last September, security researcher Ruben Santamarta sat in his home office in Madrid and partook in some creative googling, searching for technical documents related to his years-long obsession: the cybersecurity of airplanes. He was surprised to discover a fully unprotected server on Boeing's network, seemingly full of code designed to run on the company's giant 737 and 787 passenger jets, left publicly accessible and open to anyone who found it. So he downloaded everything he could see.
Now, nearly a year later, Santamarta claims that leaked code has led him to something unprecedented: security flaws in one of the 787 Dreamliner's components, deep in the plane's multi-tiered network. He suggests that for a hacker, exploiting those bugs could represent one step in a multistage attack that starts in the plane’s in-flight entertainment system and extends to highly protected, safety-critical systems like flight controls and sensors.
Boeing flatly denies that such an attack is possible, and it rejects his claim of having discovered a potential path to pull it off. Santamarta himself admits that he doesn't have a full enough picture of the aircraft—or access to a $250 million jet—to confirm his claims. But he and other avionics cybersecurity researchers who have reviewed his findings argue that while a full-on cyberattack on a plane's most sensitive systems remains far from a material threat, the flaws uncovered in the 787's code nonetheless represent a troubling lack of attention to cybersecurity from Boeing. They also say that the company's responses have not been altogether reassuring, given the critical importance of keeping commercial airplanes safe from hackers.
At the Black Hat security conference today in Las Vegas, Santamarta, a researcher for security firm IOActive, plans to present his findings, including the details of multiple serious security flaws in the code for a component of the 787 known as a Crew Information Service/Maintenance System. The CIS/MS is responsible for applications like maintenance systems and the so-called electronic flight bag, a collection of navigation documents and manuals used by pilots. Santamarta says he found a slew of memory corruption vulnerabilities in that CIS/MS, and he claims that a hacker could use those flaws as a foothold inside a restricted part of a plane's network. An attacker could potentially pivot, Santamarta says, from the in-flight entertainment system to the CIS/MS to send commands to far more sensitive components that control the plane's safety-critical systems, including its engine, brakes, and sensors. Boeing maintains that other security barriers in the 787's network architecture would make that progression impossible.
Santamarta admits that he doesn't have enough visibility into the 787's internals to know if those security barriers are circumventable. But he says his research nonetheless represents a significant step toward showing the possibility of an actual plane-hacking technique. "We don't have a 787 to test, so we can't assess the impact," Santamarta says. "We’re not saying it’s doomsday, or that we can take a plane down. But we can say: This shouldn’t happen."
In a statement, Boeing said it had investigated IOActive's claims and concluded that they don't represent any real threat of a cyberattack. "IOActive’s scenarios cannot affect any critical or essential airplane system and do not describe a way for remote attackers to access important 787 systems like the avionics system," the company's statement reads. "IOActive reviewed only one part of the 787 network using rudimentary tools, and had no access to the larger system or working environments. IOActive chose to ignore our verified results and limitations in its research, and instead made provocative statements as if they had access to and analyzed the working system. While we appreciate responsible engagement from independent cybersecurity researchers, we’re disappointed in IOActive’s irresponsible presentation."
In a follow-up call with WIRED, a company spokesperson said that in investigating IOActive's claims, Boeing had gone so far as to put an actual Boeing 787 in "flight mode" for testing, and then had its security engineers attempt to exploit the vulnerabilities that Santamarta had exposed. They found that they couldn't carry out a successful attack. Honeywell, which supplied Boeing with the code for the CIS/MS, also wrote in a statement to WIRED that "after extensive testing, Honeywell and its partners determined there is no threat to flight safety as the 787’s critical systems cannot be affected."
"Every piece of software has bugs. But this is not where I’d like to find the bugs."
IOActive's attack claims—as well as Honeywell's and Boeing's denials—are based on the specific architecture of the 787's internals. The Dreamliner's digital systems are divided into three networks: an Open Data Network, where non-sensitive components like the in-flight entertainment system live an Isolated Data Network, which includes somewhat more sensitive components like the CIS/MS that IOActive targeted and finally the Common Data Network, the most sensitive of the three, which connects to the plane's avionics and safety systems. Santamarta claims that the vulnerabilities he found in the CIS/MS, sandwiched between the ODN and CDN, provide a bridge from one to the other.
But Boeing counters that it has both "additional protection mechanisms" in the CIS/MS that would prevent its bugs from being exploited from the ODN, and another hardware device between the semi-sensitive IDN—where the CIS/MS is located—and the highly sensitive CDN. That second barrier, the company argues, allows only data to pass from one part of the network to the other, rather than the executable commands that would be necessary to affect the plane's critical systems.
Boeing's revolutionary 787 Dreamliner has changed air travel forever. Here's how the company left competitors in the dust with a risky $8 billion bet.
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the aircraft that kicked off the next-generation revolution in air travel and showcased how the future of air travel could be more efficient and beneficial for airlines and passengers alike.
Unlike other aircraft that were debuting in the early 2000s including the Airbus A380 and Boeing 747-8i, the Dreamliner's strong suit wasn't size, but performance.
Boeing decided to go smaller with the Dreamliner, hoping to ride the wave of the twin-engine revolution that the manufacturer helped start with the Boeing 777, its best-selling aircraft of all time. It was a high-stakes gamble that would determine Boeing's future in the industry for years to come.
The Dreamliner would employ composite materials including carbon-fiber to make the aircraft lighter and feature efficient engines from Rolls Royce and General Electric that would give it an extended range while reducing fuel consumption.
Though its production was marred with delays and issues, the Dreamliner has grown to be one of the most popular aircraft among airlines thanks to its efficiency and reduced operating cost. Boeing is largely credited for kicking off a new era for the industry with the ultra-modern jet that saw rivaling manufacturers rushing to compete.
Take a look at the aircraft that changed the course of Boeing and aviation forever.
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress - Operational History - Vietnam War
With the escalating situation in Southeast Asia, 28 B-52Fs were fitted with external racks for 24x 750 pound (340 kg) bombs under project South Bay in June 1964 an additional 46 aircraft received similar modifications under project Sun Bath. In March 1965, the United States commenced Operation Rolling Thunder. The first combat mission, Operation Arc Light, was flown by B-52Fs on 18 June 1965, when 30 bombers of the 9th and 441st Bombardment Squadrons struck a communist stronghold near the Bến Cát District in South Vietnam. The first wave of bombers arrived too early at a designated rendezvous point, and while maneuvering to maintain station, two B-52s collided, which resulted in the loss of both bombers and eight crewmen. The remaining bombers, minus one more which turned back due to mechanical problems, continued on towards the target. Twenty-seven Stratofortresses dropped on a one-mile by two-mile target box from between 19,000 and 22,000 feet, a little more than 50 percent of the bombs falling within the target zone. The force returned to Andersen AFB except for one bomber with electrical problems that recovered to Clark AFB, the mission having lasted 13 hours. Post-strike assessment by teams of South Vietnamese troops with American advisors found evidence that the VC had departed the area before the raid, and it was suspected that infiltration of the south's forces may have tipped off the north because of the ARVN troops involved in the post-strike inspection.
Beginning in late 1965, a number of B-52Ds underwent Big Belly modifications to increase bomb capacity for carpet bombings. While the external payload remained at 24 500 pound (227 kg) or 750 pound (340 kg) bombs, the internal capacity increased from 27 to 84 500 pound bombs or from 27 to 42 750 pound bombs. The Big Belly modification created enough capacity for a total of 60,000 pounds (27,215 kg) in 108 bombs. Thus modified, B-52Ds could carry 22,000 pounds (9,980 kg) more than B-52Fs. Designed to replace B-52Fs, modified B-52Ds entered combat in April 1966 flying from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. Each bombing mission lasted 10 to 12 hours with an aerial refueling by KC-135 Stratotankers. In spring 1967, the aircraft began flying from U Tapao Airfield in Thailand giving the aircraft the advantage of not requiring in-flight refueling.
The B-52s were restricted to bombing suspected Communist bases in relatively uninhabited sections, because their potency approached that of a tactical nuclear weapon. A formation of six B-52s, dropping their bombs from 30,000 feet, could "take out". almost everything within a "box" approximately five-eights mile wide by two miles long. Whenever Arc Light struck. in the vicinity of Saigon, the city woke from the tremor..
On 22 November 1972, a B-52D (55-0110) from U-Tapao was hit by a surface-to-air missile (SAM) while on a raid over Vinh. The crew was forced to abandon the damaged aircraft over Thailand. This was the first B-52 to be destroyed by hostile fire in Vietnam. In total, 30 B-52s were lost during the war, which included 10 B-52s shot down over North Vietnam and five others being damaged and crashing in Laos or Thailand.
The zenith of B-52 attacks in Vietnam was Operation Linebacker II (sometimes referred to as the Christmas Bombing) which consisted of waves of B-52s (mostly D models, but some Gs without jamming equipment and with a smaller bomb load). Over 12 days, B-52s flew 729 sorties and dropped 15,237 tons of bombs on Hanoi, Haiphong, and other targets. Originally 42 B-52s were committed to the war however, numbers were frequently twice this figure. During Operation Linebacker II, there were 15 B-52s shot down, five B-52s were heavily damaged (1 crashed in Laos), and five B-52s suffered medium damage. A total of 25 crewmen were killed in these losses. Vietnam claimed 34 B-52s were shot down.
Famous quotes related to vietnam war :
&ldquo No event in American history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam War. It was misreported then, and it is misremembered now. &rdquo
&mdashRichard M. Nixon (b. 1913)
Boeing completes successful first flight of new model amid 737 Max woes
Boeing completed a successful first flight of its new model 777X jetliner Saturday amid the company's woes with its still-grounded 737 Max planes, according to the company.
The company announced the accomplishment of the three hour and 51 minute test flight over Washington state in a press release, calling the aircraft the largest and most fuel efficient twin-engine commercial jet.
"Our Boeing team has taken the most successful twin-aisle jet of all time and made it even more efficient, more capable and more comfortable for all," President and CEO of Boeing Stan Deal said. "Today's safe first flight of the 777X is a tribute to the years of hard work and dedication from our teammates, our suppliers and our community partners in Washington state and across the globe."
Boeing launched the months of testing with this flight after two attempts to previously test the plane had been delayed because of high winds, Reuters reported .
The 777X planes, which include the 777-8 and the 777-9, use 10 percent less fuel and emissions and operate at 10 percent lower costs than competition, the press release says. These plans are scheduled to be available in 2021, and Boeing says 309 777Xs have already been purchased for $442 million, according to Reuters.
If the 777X is certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), it will be Boeing’s first certification since software flaws caused two fatal 737 Max crashes, prompting the U.S. to ground those planes. The FAA has said it will make sure the aircraft is tested carefully to ensure its safety.
Boeing has been immersed in controversy since the 737 Max crashes with those aircrafts being grounded since March 2019 and the company being fined $3.9 million for implementing faulty parts on 133 of its jets. The company recently announced the 737 Max will take to the skies again in mid-2020.
Why the Boeing 747 Is the 'Most Popular Airplane In History'
Delta Air Lines and United are locked in an unusual competition, and it’s one that has nothing to do with air fares or who has the best Wi-Fi. Sometime in the next few months, the airlines will phase out their remaining Boeing 747 widebodies—about a year ahead of schedule—and as the deadline for this milestone approaches, each airline is angling for the honor of claiming they’ll be the one to fly the last trip for this iconic jetliner operated by a U.S. airline.
There will never be a plane like it.
It’s a backhanded tribute to what made this plane so popular with the public, ever since Pan American World Airways launched the first 747 into service in January of 1970. “It’s a bittersweet moment,” says a spokesperson for United, who says that requests are coming in from customers who want to hop a ride on one of the last flights. United acquired many of its Boeing 747s when it bought Pan Am’s Pacific route network in 1985, as that storied airline company began to shed assets in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to stay afloat.
United would only tell Traveler that the final flight will occur sometime in the fourth quarter, possibly in late October. It currently has 14 747s in its fleet, flying on routes like San Francisco to Beijing and Seoul. Delta is also expected to wind down its 747 schedule later in 2017, with flights from Japan to Hawaii expected to be particularly popular with aviation buffs the last 747 flights on Delta are also likely to be from Detroit to Tokyo or Seoul. Other international airlines are still flying the classic jetliner—there are 500 still in service, out of 1,500 built, according to Boeing—but those airlines, too, are expected to send the jets to the junkyard in the near future.
Other aircraft, to be sure, have come and gone. Two other widebody contenders, the DC-10 and the L-1011, have vanished—and with little fanfare. So what's different about this one?
“It is the most popular airplane in history, “ at least in terms of the excitement it generates, says Henry Harteveldt, founder and travel analyst at Atmosphere Research, an advisory firm serving the global travel industry. “At the time, it really was regarded as revolutionary."
“The thing that stuck out about it was the design: that unique bubble at the top of the plane," he says. For passengers seated in the front section on the main deck below, “you were really sitting in the nose of the plane, which was the first time passengers could ever do that.”
Secrets of Your Airline Seat
When it debuted, the outlook for demand was so uncertain that airlines didn’t cram a lot of seats into the spacious interior, leaving it with such an excess of floor space that airlines carved out room for passenger lounges on some planes, even coach passengers could avail themselves of this luxury perk. Adding to the allure was that it was the first commercial airliner with two aisles. The 747 was also first plane to have overhead bins prior to that, airplanes featured an "open hat rack," like those found on buses and trains. (According to Boeing, the 747 interior was called the “Superjet Look” and was added to the company's single-aisle planes—707,727, and 737—after the introduction of the 747.) Too, the early coach seats were so wide that they came close to what a first class passenger might experience on other passenger aircraft at the time, according to Harteveldt.
The Boeing 737 is the best-selling airliner of all time — here's its incredible history
The Boeing 737 is ubiquitous. If you've taken a commercial flight in the last 50 years, there's good chance it was on a Boeing 737.
That's because Boeing has sold a whole lot of them. Since 1965, the American aviation giant has sold a whopping 14,545 737s. Just this week, Boeing delivered the 10,000th 737, a new MAX 8 model, to Southwest Airlines. To put that into perspective, Boeing's second best selling plane, the wide-body 777, has received a little less than 2,000 orders. However, it should be noted that the long-haul 777 costs several times more than the 737 and is used in different segments of the airline market.
Over the years, the Boeing 737 has proven itself to be a faithful workhorse for airlines around the world. Its versatility is nothing short of astounding. What debuted in 1967 as a 50-seat regional jet has now spawned 200-plus-seat variants capable of trans-Atlantic travel.
With the introduction of the MAX, Boeing's long-serving 737 is set to fly on well past its 70th birthday.