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"Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." Lord Kelvin, 1895

Aerospace Headline News

Tech Industry Headlines - RF Cafe- Archives -

• Need for Pilots and Technicians Worldwide Continues Despite Wuhan Virus

• Researchers Look to Reduce Rotorcraft Noise

• China's Chang'e 5 Returns Moon Rock Samples to Earth

• Aircraft Electronics Association Awards $100,000 in Scholarships

• Japan May Cut China from Supply Chain for Drones

• Walmart Signs Trio of Drone Deals to Counter Amazon

Pause on Pilot Cadet Programs Leads to Loss and Opportunity

•  Boeing's 20-Year Job Prediction Lowered

• NASA Plans for Return to Moon to Cost $28B

Gallery of Chevy Camaro History

Gallery of Chevy Camaro History - Airplanes and RocketsThis slideshow stepping through the years of the Camaro holds special meaning for me since my first car was a '69 Camaro SS. "Chevrolet introduced its Mustang-fighting Camaro selling the first one on September 29, 1966. The first episode of Star Trek debuted on NBC TV three weeks earlier. For the 1968 model year, the just-introduced Camaro saw changes mainly for regulatory issues, such as the newly mandated side marker lights in the fenders. For 1969, Chevrolet stylists toughened the Camaro, widening the rear fenders and adding crisp character lines atop the wheel arches, rendering the openings trapezoidal rather than rounded. After a late production start, the second-generation Camaro..."

Charlie's Cox Model Airplane Collection

Charlie's Cox Model Airplane Collection - Airplanes and RocketsAs the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. That being the case, here are 8,000 of some of the most amazing words that I've ever seen regarding Cox control line airplanes. These photos were sent to me by Airplanes and Rockets website visitor Charlie H. According to his e-mail, there are around 300 models in all, many of which are still in their original boxes. I see some pretty unique examples in the photos. If my understanding is correct, he is interested in selling his collection. It must be worth a small fortune. I will let you know how to contact him if he does want to sell part or all of the models...

"Smellicopter" Uses Live Moth Antenna to Seek Smells

"Smellicopter" Uses Live Moth Antenna to Seek Smells - Airplanes and Rockets"Who needs a sensor from the manufacturer? Researchers from the University of Washington have equipped their drone with one of nature's finest detectors: a moth antenna. 'Nature really blows our human-made odor sensors out of the water,' said UW doctoral student Melanie Anderson , lead researcher of the aerial vehicle known as the 'Smellicopter.' 'By using an actual moth antenna with Smellicopter, we're able to get the best of both worlds: the sensitivity of a biological organism on a robotic platform where we can control its motion.' The live antenna responds to chemical signals, allowing the flying vehicle to navigate toward specific odors..."

Vintage Carrom Board (and Box) Restoration

Vintage Carrom Board Restoration - Airplanes and RocketsFor the last dozen years or so, I have been working to re-acquire some of the items I remember having as a kid and teenager back in the 1960s and 1970s. Dittos for Melanie's stuff. Very few of the original articles survived my handling, but fortunately many other people took better care of their stuff (or their parents did), so much of it is available on eBay. Back in the early days of eBay, a lot of the vintage gears could be purchased at a decent price, but nowadays the costs have skyrocketed. This 1960s era Carrom (aka Carom) Game Board came from our daughter, who found it in a Goodwill store for just a couple bucks. Even Goodwill and Salvation Army store prices have gone through the roof, but she got this at one of the specialty "Bins" outlets...

Japanese Air Force After World War I

Air Progress - Japanese Air Force After World War I, November 1954 Air Trails - Airplanes and RocketsJapanese involvement in World War I is generally not as well known as it is for World War II. The surprise attack at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, has permanently implanted itself as one of the nation's most memorable events, and obviously the U.S. and Japan were mortal enemies until the Japs' unconditional surrender on September 2, 1945, following the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Conversely, Japan was part of the Allied (aka Entente) powers in World War I, and was considered an ally of America, Great Britain, Italy, and France (primarily) in their war against Germany, Austria, and the Ottoman Empire. It was one of those "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" scenarios. Japan played a major role in barricading German sea lanes in the South Pacific...

UAV Software Prioritizes Human Safety

UAV Software Prioritizes Human Safety - Airplanes and Rockets"Autonomous aircraft systems have the potential to save lives, and NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center's Resilient Autonomy project is at the forefront of development. These advanced software systems are preventing air-to-ground collisions in piloted aircraft and the project is now focusing on developments to prevent aircraft from colliding with other aircraft in the air. The software can better manage the mission intent of the flight while always maneuvering within the acceptable performance limits of the aircraft, much like how a pilot manages a safe flight. Autonomous aircraft systems have the potential to save lives..."

Buhl Bull Pup Article & Plans

Buhl Bull Pup, October 1950 Air Trails - Airplanes and RocketsBuhl Aircraft Company, founded in 1925 in Detroit, Michigan, really had just two successful airplane designs - the CA−6 Airsedan and the LA−1 Bull Pup. The Buhl A−1 Autogyro was a novelty aircraft that never gained popularity. It came out in 1931, a year before the company went out of business. This 1/2A size Bull Pup construction by Charles Hollinger article and plans appeared in a 1950 issue of Air Trails magazine. The Bull Pup began life as a rubber powered model, and Mr. Hollinger adapted it for powered free flight at a request from Air Trails editors. Its 35" wingspan is a convenient size and makes for an economical building project, even more so with today's balsa prices. A conversion to electric power with three-channel R/C would be easily accomplished...

1st TV Airing of "A Charlie Brown Christmas"

"Peanuts on Television," by Charles Schulz - Airplanes and RocketsAs a lifelong admirer of Charles Schulz's Peanuts comic strip, I occasionally buy a collectible item like a Snoopy music box that plays "It's a Long Way to Tipperary," a plastic Schroeder and piano figurine, a Charlie Brown Skediddler, or a Snoopy astronaut from the Apollo era. This time I bought the edition of TV Guide that announced the first showing of the "A Charlie Brown Christmas" cartoon. Also in this edition is the announcement of plans to preempt regular programming to televise the launch of the Gemini VII spacecraft, which carried astronauts Frank Borman and James A. Lovell. It launched right on time at 2:30 pm on December 4th. "As his millions of fans long since have discovered, under that inept, ineffectual, bumbling exterior of Charlie Brown's there beats a heart as soft and sweet as a marshmallow. In the sequence on these pages, drawn exclusively for TV Guide by Charlie's creator, Charles Schulz, he becomes concerned about...

Smart Parachute Rescues Drones

Smart Parachute Rescues Drones - Airplanes and Rockets"An intelligent parachute system deploys itself an emergency to bring the damaged drone safely to the ground. The system can be easily mounted to a drone at any time using a bayonet lock. Intelligent electronics monitor the flight condition, independent of flight control; an algorithm implements automatic crash detection. In an emergency, the pilot no longer has to react and press a release button. The system operates without explosive, pyrotechnical components. Drone Rescue Systems GmbH, awarded by the European Space Agency (ESNC-2016), developed the fastest and most efficient parachute safety solution for drones available on the market right now..."

A-1 Jetstream Towline Glider

A/1 Jetstream Towline Glider, November 1960 American Modeler Magazine - Airplanes and RocketsAirplanes and Rockets website visitor L. Ross wrote to request that this article featuring Warren Kurth's Jetstream A-1 towline glider be posted. I recently purchased the November 1960 issue of American Modeler magazine, where it appeared, so I scanned and processed the images and text. Detailed building, covering, and flying instructions are provided by Mr. Kurth. The Jetstream's projected wingspan is given on the plans as 47", with a wing area of 269 square inches. The fuselage is 31" long with a balsa box construction, while the wing an tail surfaces are sticks and sheet ribs. The wing airfoil is undercambered, which makes covering with Jap tissue a little tricky, but the horizontal stabilizer uses a flat bottom lifting airfoil. Instructions for making the regulation A-1 towline is even given. The model is built so light that it requires more than 1.5 ounces of ballast to bring it up to the A-1 class minimum of 5.08 oz (144 grams)...

Sparks on Ice: Radio in the Arctic

Sparks on Ice: Radio in the Arctic, December 1945 Flying Aces - Airplanes and RocketsThe old adage about pioneers taking the arrows is true in many realms - not just the exploration and settling of the wild west. This story entitled "Sparks on Ice" recounting the trials and tribulations of the troops who installed and debugged the first arctic directional beacons appeared in a 1945 issue of Flying Age magazine. "Sparks" (or "Sparky") was an endearing nickname given to early radio operators who used spark gap transmitters to send out their Morse code messages. It stuck around for many years after better transmitter systems were developed - although it is not very often heard today. The most interesting part of Mark Weaver's article is a discussion of the many atmospheric phenomena that affect radio waves of various wavelengths. A lot of smart people - enlisted, commissioned, and civilian - sacrificed mightily...

Ban on Hydroxychloroquine Rescinded by AMA

Ban on Hydroxychloroquine Rescinded by AMA - RF CafeExperts and news outlets told Americans and people of the world not to use hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as an off-label treatment for the Wuhan Flu, in spite of its being safely prescribed for decades. We were told by "experts" that no vaccine could possibly be developed in less than a year. Now, the American Medical Association (AMA) has changed its mind on HCQ and a vaccine is being distributed today. Politically motivated fake science has likely caused suffering and death for an untold number of people. Per Resolution 509 (p18), November 2020: "RESOLVED, That our American Medical Association rescind its statement calling for physicians to stop prescribing hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine until sufficient evidence becomes available to conclusively illustrate that the harm associated with use outweighs benefit early in the disease course..." Careful who you listen to - it could kill you.

Salt-Based Propellant Could Power Rockets

Salt-Based Propellant Could Power Rockets - Airplanes and Rockets"In smaller spacecraft such as CubeSat satellites, a salt-based monopropellant is showing promise. The propellant, called FAM-110A, is a mixture of two commercially available salts. It can be used in a combined chemical-electric thruster. A rocket engine using the propellant could be practical at almost any pressure level; however, it also leaves a significant amount of liquid residue after it burns. This is undesirable because it means that the combustion is incomplete. The formulation requires changes in order to improve efficiency of its combustion..."

Mactuator: Magnetic Actuator for R/C

Mactuator: Magnetic Actuator for R/C, November 1954 Air Trails - Airplanes and RocketsThis "Mactuator," or magnetic actuator for radio controlled models, may be a form of the very first truly digital servo - that is to say that a digital input consisting of ones and zeroes determines the position of the control arm. Analog servos and their "digital" cousins of the types employed by R/C modelers use the relative position and width of a pulse in a train of pulses to determine what the position of the control arm will be. The main difference between the two types is the refresh rate of analog versus digital - about 20 milliseconds vs. 0.3 milliseconds, respectively. Most people not familiar with hobby type servos would probably assume - and understandably so - that a digital servo takes as a signal input a binary word of some length instructing it where to position the control arm. For instance, the receiver might output a 10-bit word that represents 210 = 1024 discrete positions for the servo...

Aviation World Mourns Passing of Chuck Yeager

Aviation World Mourns Passing of Chuck Yeager - Airplanes and Rockets"The first man to break the sound barrier, Chuck Yeager, and who undoubtedly had 'the right stuff,' died on December 7, 2020 at the ripe old age of 97. You can't take West Virginia out of the boy. Charles Yeager was born on February 13, 1923, in Myra, West Virginia, deep in the heart of Appalachian hill country. As a child, Yeager shot squirrels and rabbits and skinned them for the family's dinners. In September 1941, armed with his high school diploma, Yeager enlisted in the Army Air Forces, which was the precursor to today's U.S. Air Force. Yeager became an airplane mechanic. After tagging along with a maintenance officer who was flight-testing an airplane, Yeager decided to sign up for a flight training program..."

Airplanes & Rockets

Kirt Blattenberger, Webmaster - Airplanes and Rockets
Kirt Blattenberger
Carpe Diem!
(Seize the Day!)

Even during the busiest times of my life I have endeavored to maintain some form of model building activity. This site has been created to help me chronicle my journey through a lifelong involvement in model aviation, which all began in Mayo, MD ...

1996 - 2026

Kirt Blattenberger
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All trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other rights of ownership to images and text used on the Airplanes and Rockets website are hereby acknowledged.

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