Daily Archives: January 21, 2023

Hello all,

I’ve been making some changes with caching and I suspect that a mobile site may have been cached as the default.

Also, one of the plug-ins decided to corrupt some configs, hence the site being down for extended periods this week with critical errors.

Let us know here if you continue to see issues.

There are still a few things I am working on. Once it all gets nailed down, we should see some big improvements on the database and we should have a small fediverse presence.

-Admin

21 January 1987

Rockwell B-1B Lancer 85-0073, Wings of Freedom, lands at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota, 21 January 1987. (U.S. Air Force)
General John T. Chain, Jr., U.S. Air Force
General John T. Chain, Jr., U.S. Air Force

21 January 1987: The first Rockwell International B-1B Lancer was delivered to the 28th Bomb Wing at Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota. The airplane, serial number 85-0073, was named Wings of Freedom. It was flown to Ellsworth by General John T. Chain, Jr., Commander in Chief, Strategic Air Command.

100 B-1B Lancers were built by Rockwell International’s aircraft division at Air Force Plant 42, Palmdale, California, between 1983 and 1988

The Rockwell International B-1B Lancer is a supersonic intercontinental bomber capable of performing strategic or tactical missions. It is operated by a flight crew of four.

The B-1B is 147 feet, 2.61 inches (44.8719 meters) long, with the wing span varying from 86 feet, 8.00 inches (26.4160 meters) at 67.5° sweep to 136 feet, 8.17 inches (41.6603 meters) at when fully extended to 15° sweep. It is 33 feet, 7.26 inches (10.2428 meters) high to the top of the vertical fin. The bomber’s empty weight is approximately 180,500 pounds (81,873 kilograms). Its maximum weight in flight is 477,000 pounds (216,634 kilograms). The internal payload is up to 75,000 pounds (34,019 kilograms).

The bomber is powered by four General Electric F101-GE-102 turbofan engines, mounted in two-engine nacelles under the wing roots. These are rated at 17,390 pounds of thrust (17.355 kilonewtons) and produce 30,780 pounds (136.916 kilonewtons) with “augmentation.” The engine has two fan stages, a 9-stage axial-flow compressor and a 3-stage turbine. The F101-GE-102 is 15 feet, 0.7 inches (4.590 meters) long, 4 feet, 7.2 inches (1.402 meters) in diameter and weighs 4,460 pounds (2,023 kilograms).

“The Bone” has a maximum speed of Mach 1.2 at Sea Level (913 miles per hour, or 1,470 kilometers per hour). The service ceiling is “over 30,000 feet” (9,144 meters). The Lancer’s maximum range is “intercontinental, unrefueled.”

A Rockwell B-1B drops Mk. 82 bombs from its three weapons bays. (U.S. Air Force)

It can carry up to 84 Mk.82 500-pound (226.8 kilogram) bombs, 24 Mk.84 2,000-pound (907.2 kilogram) bombs or other weapons in three weapons bays. The B-1B was built with the capability to carry 24 B61 thermonuclear bombs, though, since 2007, the fleet no longer has this capability.

100 B-1B Lancers were built between 1983 and 1988. As of May 2018, 62 B-1B bombers are in the active Air Force inventory. The Air Force plans upgrades to the aircraft and plans to keep it in service until 2036.

After 21 years of service, 85-0073 was retired to The Boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Tucson, Arizona, 24 March 2008.

Rockwell B-1B Lancer, 85-0073, Wings of Freedom, at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota, 21 January 1987. (U.S. Air Force)
Rockwell B-1B Lancer, 85-0073, Wings of Freedom, at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota, 21 January 1987. (U.S. Air Force)

© 2019, Bryan R. Swopes

21 January 1984

McDonnell Douglas F-15A-17-MC Eagle 76-0086 carrying an LTV ASM-135 anti-satellite missile on a centerline hardpoint. (U.S. Air Force)
McDonnell Douglas F-15A-17-MC Eagle 76-0086 carrying an LTV ASM-135 anti-satellite missile on a centerline hardpoint. (U.S. Air Force)

21 January 1984: Major Ralph B. Filburn, U.S. Air Force, flying a McDonnell Douglas F-15A-17-MC Eagle, serial number 76-0086, successfully launched a Ling-Temco-Vought ASM-135A anti-satellite missile to a point in space.

The ASM-135 was a three-stage guided missile using a solid-fueled Boeing AGM-69 Short Range Attack Missile (SRAM) as its first stage and an LTV Aerospace Altair 3 rocket as the second stage. The third stage was the homing vehicle, which used an infrared seeker to intercept the targeted satellite. This was not an explosive warhead. The satellite was destroyed by the kinetic energy of the very high speed impact. The ASM-135 is 18 feet (5.48 meters) long, 20 inches (50.8 centimeters) in diameter and weighs 2,600 pounds (1,180 kilograms).

There were five test launches of the ASM-135, including one in which an orbiting satellite was intercepted and destroyed. The missile was not placed in production, however, and the program was cancelled.

76-0086 was retired 18 May 1995 to The Boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Tucson, Arizona. It was scrapped in 2008.

McDonnell Douglas F-15A-17 Eagle 76-0086 with ASM-135 Anti-Satellite Missile. (U.S. Air Force)

© 2019, Bryan R. Swopes

21 January 1976

British Airways' Concorde G-BOAA departing Heathrow, 11:40 a.m., 21 January 1976. (Adrian Meredith/British Airways)
British Airways’ Concorde G-BOAA departing Heathrow, 11:40 a.m., 21 January 1976. (Adrian Meredith/British Airways)

21 January 1976: The first scheduled supersonic passenger airliners, Air France’s Concorde F-BVFA, and British Airways’ Concorde G-BOAA, took off simultaneously at 11:40 a.m. F-BVFA departed Paris en route Rio de Janero, with a stop at Dakar, and G-BOAA departed London Heathrow en route Bahrain.

Air France Flight AF 085 was flown by Commandant de bord, Captain Pierre Jean Louis Chanoine-Martiel, with Captain Pierre Dudal, Chief Pilot, Concorde Division, as co-pilot; and Officier Mécanicien Navigant (Flight Engineer) André Blanc.

Flight crew of F-BVFA, 21 January 1976. Left to right: Co-pilot, Captain Pierre Dudal, Chief Pilot, Concorde Division; Second Officer André Blanc, Officier Mécanicien Navigant; and Captain Pierre Chanoine-Martiel, Commandant du bord. (Air France/Musée de l’Air et de l’Espace, Aéroport de Paris – Le Bourget)

The British Airways’ flight, BA 300, using the call sign “Speedbird Concorde,” was crewed by Captain Norman Victor Todd, Captain Brian James Calvert and Flight Engineer John Lidiard. The British Aircraft Corporation’s Chief Test Pilot, Ernest Brian Trubshaw, C.B.E., M.V.O., was also aboard.

British Airways flight crew, Left to Right: Senior Engineer Officer John Lidiard; Captain Brian James Calvert; Senior Test Pilot Brian Trubshaw; and Captain Norman Victor Todd. (British Airways)
Concorde inaugural flights, 21 January 1976. (Heritage Concorde)

G-BOAA arrived on time at 15:20. F-BVFA, after a delay at Dakar, arrived at Rio de Janeiro at 19:00.

Air France Concorde F-BVFA. (Aérospatiale/Musée de l’Air et de l’Espace, Aéroport de Paris – Le Bourget)

In 1977, the Royal Aero Club awarded its Britannia Trophy to Captain Todd for “the most meritorious performance in aviation during 1976.”

© 2019, Bryan R. Swopes