It's finally here -
Great North American Solar Eclipse of 2017! The amateur astronomy
community has been anticipating and preparing for the event for a couple years.
Astronomy magazine dedicated the entire August issue to providing detailed
information on viewing suggestions along the entire path. Traffic from the Pacific Coast
of Oregon to the Atlantic Coast of South Carolina will probably be a challenge as people
vie for positions as close to the centerline as possible. Those who manage optimal
locations will see about 2 minutes and 40 seconds of total darkness. Others within the
68-mile-wide path of totality will see from a fraction of a second up to the full extent.
According to a calculator on the Vox website, we will only see a 76.2% eclipse, which will
barely darken our skies ...
Pee Wee .010 engine sits on a shelf above my computer monitor, along with a small collection
of other vintage aeromodelling paraphernalia. They serve as a reminder of the good times as
a kid building and flying (and crashing and rebuilding) back in the 1960s and 1970s. I don't
recall what airplane I had it on - maybe a homebrew free flight job. Unlike .049 Babe Bees
and Golden Bees which I had a few of, I only ever had one of the .010s. They were more of
a curiosity than a 'thing.' In this article, the author's suggestion that indoor control line
might be a possibility was wishful thinking since even if the building proprietors were willing
to suffer the ear-splitting noise, they would ...
"Small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)
will soon navigate without using GPS or human assistance as demonstrated by several successful
test runs last month as part of the Fast Lightweight Autonomy (FLA) program. DARPA recently
announced the breakthrough, after four days of testing in central Florida. The test runs marked
progress toward development of small, quadcopter drones that are able to fly through obstacle-ridden
1961 was really only in the dawn of the Space Age,
with the first successful communications satellites having been launched just a few years
earlier in 1957. The first suborbital rocket launch occurred in 1944 when the Germans sent
a V-2 rocket above the Kármán line (100 km, 62 mi) which separates Earth's atmosphere
from outer space. Technology was moving pretty quickly in the aerospace realm, both with airplanes
and with rockets. Model rockets were a big thing for boys (and a few girls) of the era, and
similar advances in materials and methods were being reported in the pages of American
Modeler and other magazines ...
"Join the Academy of Model Aeronautics Foundation in
celebrating model aviation for the fifth annual
National Model Aviation Day,
August 12, 2017. National Model Aviation Day was created to encourage clubs to celebrate
the hobby and share it with the public. Our chartered clubs have also been asked to conduct
a fundraiser to provide assistance to a worthy cause. For this year all clubs have been asked
to support the AMA Foundation. The AMA is devoted to inspiring the young and young-at-heart
to pursue a hobby that will inspire creativity and advanced learning through the use of hands-on
applications. The purposes ..."
"Retired USAF Colonels Blake and Sandy Thomas met at
Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama. On their first date Blake took Sandy on a ride
in a 1944 BT-13, a two-seat military trainer with a radial engine. 'It was love at first flight,'
Sandy said. In December 2017, they will celebrate their 23rd anniversary. Their shared love
of aviation led to flying offspring. Their first-born homebuilt was an RV-7, their third,
a Sopwith Schneider. This is the story of their middle offspring, a replica World War I fighter,
the 1917 Nieuport-28. The Plane Named 'Sandy,' the the
Here are three models in one with separate plans provided
for each of ½A, FAI (Class A), and Class B versions of Robert Sifleet's contest
free flight bird. This piece from the June 1961 issue of American Modeler is half
of a pair of articles, one of which covers the model build and flight details, and the other
that provides a brief autobiography on Maximus designer
"Geely, the parent company of Volvo, announced that
it has acquired the flying car company Terrafugia. The
flying car, created a decade ago by a handful of MIT grads, just made another huge leap
toward becoming an actual product thanks to its new owner. The South China News reported that
Geely, the company that also owns Volvo, agreed to acquire Terrafugia. Reports indicate Geely
was particularly interested in the Terrafugia’s FAA approval last year allowing the transforming
car to be certified as a light sport aircraft. The exemption means Terrafugia ..."
"MIT engineers have developed and built an unpiloted
aerial vehicle, or UAV, that is expected to provide temporary telecomms service to areas affected
by disasters and calamities. The UAV technology is considered inexpensive and is capable of
flying and providing service for several days. This is not the first time
UAV technology has been exploited for this purpose. Google has also developed
and tested a system that provides temporary telecomms coverage in remote and calamity-stricken
areas. The MIT-developed drone is considerably inexpensive ..."
solid scale model airplane,
ship, train, or automobile from a block of balsa or pine was a favorite pastime of many people
up until maybe the latter part of the last century. For some it was the preferred means of
crafting a replica of their favorite subject, and for others it a second-best option if building
and flying, sailing, etc., a working model was not possible. Lack of funds, time, skill, or
any combination thereof could have been the cause. Little known to the solid scale modelers
just prior to the publication date of this issue of Flying Aces was that their collective
skills would be ...
"Hypersonic flight - defined as Mach five or above
- would see aircraft subjected to external temperatures between 2,000 and 3,000°C, leading
to structural challenges caused by oxidation and ablation. Amongst other materials, current
spacecraft and missiles rely on
ultra-high temperature ceramics (UHTCs) to combat high temperatures. However,
according to Manchester University, conventional UHTCs can't currently satisfy the associated
ablation requirements of hypersonic flight. 'At present one of the biggest challenges is how
to protect critical components such ..."
"The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) has developed
a patented system and method of transitioning an aircraft between helicopter and fixed wing
flight modes. The
stop rotor aircraft is capable of both a helicopter mode vertical takeoff
and landing (VTOL) and efficient high speed fixed wing flight by flipping the left wing/rotor
blade 180 degrees between flight modes. Conversion between flight modes will take about 1-2
seconds and simulations indicate altitude deviations of less than 50 feet. Under sponsorship
of the Office of Naval Research (ONR), a prototype battery electric aircraft is being developed
that is capable ..."
"Bill's Authors Say Goal is to Protect Air Traffic
from Collisions with Unmanned Aircraft. U.S. Representative Jim Langevin (D-RI) and Senator
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) have introduced the
Drone Operator Safety Act in the U.S. House of representatives, a bill
to they say is intended to help protect American air traffic from the 'misuse' of drones.
According to a news release on Congressman Langevin's website, the bill would make it a criminal
offense to fly a drone in a way that poses a safety risk to the operation of a manned aircraft.
It would also prohibit operators ..."
"There are many iconic photographs from World War II:
An aircraft spotter standing atop a London building with St. Paul's Cathedral rising in the
background, taken by LIFE photographer George Strock; Alfred Eisenstaedt's photo 'The Kiss,'
shot in Times Square the day Japan surrendered. They're all powerful - and they're all in
black and white. While color images of the war exist, they aren't extremely common. Yet official
photographers serving with the British armed forces shot nearly 3,000 color photographs, using
Kodachrome film obtained from the United States ..."
"Rescued from a desert bombing range then painstakingly
restored over many years, the
B-29 Superfortress Doc brought vintage strategic air power to EAA AirVenture
in July. Doc and crew flew away from Oshkosh, Wisconsin, with the 'Best Bomber Award,' among
others, returning home to temporary quarters as Doc’s Friends Inc., pass the hat to build
a permanent home for the beloved bomber in Wichita, Kansas ..."