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Author Topic: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers  (Read 10644 times)

Offline AVIATOR

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This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« on: July 10, 2009, 03:57:32 AM »
1] VICKERS VALIANT



First flew :     18th May 1951, flown by Jock Bryce & Mutt Summers
First operational :    January 1955
Mk.2 first flew :    4th September 1953
End of the line :    January 1965
   
Variants
Type 660    Prototype
B.Mk.1    First production
B(PR).Mk.1    Reconnaissance
B.Mk.2    Pathfinder target marking


     
VICKERS VALIANT B.Mk 1
Crew    5
Power Plant    4 10,000Ib.s.t. Rolls-Royce Avon 28 turbo fans
Span    114.33 ft (34.85 m)
Length    108.25 ft (32.99 m)
Wing area    2,362 sq ft (219.4 m2)
Weight empty    75,881 Ib (34.419 kg)
MTOW    140,000 Ib (63,503 kg)
Maximum speed    492 knots at 30,000 ft
Ceiling    54,000 ft (16,459 m)
Range    3,908 naut. miles (7,242 km)
Unrefuelled load    Up to 21,000 Ib (9,525 kg)

A Valiant B1 was the first RAF aircraft to deliver an operational British atomic bomb in a test of a down-rated Blue Danube weapon at Maralinga, South Australia, on 11 October 1956. The Valiant was the first of the V-bombers to see combat, during the Anglo-French-Israeli Suez intervention (Op. Musketeer) in October-November 1956. Valiants were originally assigned to the strategic nuclear bombing role as were the Vulcan and Victor B1s when they became operational. Originally the bombing role was at high level but with the shooting down of Gary Powers' U-2 in 1960, the SAM threat caused the V-force to train for low-level attack. They were repainted in grey/green camouflage, replacing their anti-flash white scheme. Low-level operations proved too much for the Valiant, which suffered from metal fatigue issues in 1964. In early 1965 the government decided repairs could not be justified and the fleet was permanently grounded.



The last known Valiant bomber sortie was on 9 December 1964 in XD818, the aircraft pictured above, which is housed at the RAF Museum at Cosford in Staffordshire as the last example of these aircraft. Under the wing is an example of Yellow Sun, the first British operational high-yield strategic nuclear weapon. The casing was 6.4m long, 1.2m in diameter, and weighed 3.3 tonnes. Unlike contemporary US bombs it did not use a parachute to retard its fall; instead, the blunt nose was intended to slow the fall of the weapon sufficiently to permit the bomber to escape the detonation. The initial Green Grass warhead was originally estimated to have a 500 kT yield , but this was later revised downwards to 400 kT. It was never tested. It used a dangerously large quantity of fissile material, considerably more than an uncompressed critical mass. It was kept subcritical by being fashioned into a thin-walled spherical shell. To guard against accidental crushing of the core into a critical condition the shell was filled with 133,000 steel ball-bearings weighing 450 kg. These had to be removed before flight.

Offline shawn a

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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2009, 06:37:25 AM »
To me, the Victor was the prettiest. It looked like something out of Flash Gordon.

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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2009, 01:29:26 AM »
OK Shawn, let's do that one next.

In 1947 the Chiefs of Staff issued Operational Requirement OR.229
This demanded a 4 engined jet bomber capable of delivering a 10,000lb nuclear bomb at 500 knots from a height of 45,000ft, with a range of 3,500 miles.

The result were three contenders which were all taken up.
Here is the second one.
    
2] HANDLEY PAGE VICTOR



Crew    5
Power Plant    4 20,600Ib.s.t. Rolls-Royce Conway Mk.201 turbo fans
Span    117 ft (35.69 m)
Length    114.92 ft (35.02 m)
Wing area    2,200 sq ft (204.38 m2)
Weight empty    110,000 Ib (33,550 kg)
MTOW    223,000 Ib (101,150 kg)
Maximum speed    550 knots Mach 0.96 at 36,090 ft
Ceiling    52,000 ft (15,850 m)
Range    3,995 naut. miles (7,403 km)
Unrefuelled load    Up to 35,000 Ib (15,876 kg)



During the fifties at the height of the cold war, these V bombers flew constant standing patrols on the  northern edge of the Soviet Union carrying nuclear weapons. I guess we will never really know just how much they contributed to convincing the Soviets not to attack Eastern Europe.




Offline shawn a

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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2009, 02:03:05 AM »
YEEEHAW!!
It's got an otherworldly look to it!
Are any still flying? On display? Can I get a ride in one?

Offline AVIATOR

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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2009, 02:14:09 AM »
What is it they say? "Only a mother could love it"!


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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2009, 10:02:49 PM »
3] AVRO VULCAN



First flew :     30th August 1952, flown by Roly Falk
First front line squadron :    May 1957, No.83 Squadron, Waddington
Bomber units disbanded :    1982
End of the line :    31st March 1984


   
Variants
Type 698    Prototype
B Mk.1    First production
B.Mk.1A    Upgraded Mk.1
B.Mk.2    Bigger wings & engines
B.Mk.2BS    Upgrade for Blue Steel
K.Mk.2    Comverted to tankers
     AVRO VULCAN B.Mk 2
Crew    5
Power Plant    4 20,000Ib.s.t. Bristol Siddeley Olympus 301 turbojets
Span    111 ft (33.83 m)
Length    99.92 ft (30.45 m)
Wing area    3,964 sq ft (368.29 m2)
Weight empty    106,000 Ib (48,081 kg)
MTOW    200,180 Ib (98,300 kg)
Maximum speed    562 knots Mach 0.98 at 40.000 ft
Ceiling    65,000 ft (19.912 m)
Range    2,300 naut. miles (3,701 km)
Unrefuelled load    Up to 21,000 Ib (9,525 kg) or one Blue Steel missile


   

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Re: This thread is dedicated to the three cold war V bombers
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2009, 07:00:51 PM »
YEEEHAW!!
It's got an otherworldly look to it!
Are any still flying? On display? Can I get a ride in one?

There's a couple in museums, the Bruntingthorpe and Elvington museums each have one that are kept in ground operational condition for taxi runs. Duxford and Cosford also have one, but I think the one at Duxford is under restoration...

So yeah, maybe you can get a ride...

Still flying, nope, although one of the two almost took off during a taxi run.
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