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Never Told Tales of Blackbirds, U2s and Roadrunners, the Golden Age of Aerospace

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posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 04:54 AM
I was looking for information on fast reactors when I ran into this. It's a presentation by a retired person who engineered the J58 engine on the Blackbird, and also engineered suntan engine (liquid hydrogen fueled blackbird competitor) and rocket engines. It's about his stories engineering these engines, essentially.

Never Told Tales of Blackbirds, U2s and Roadrunners, the Golden Age of Aerospace

Dr. Bob Abernethy
Manager of Reliability and Safety (Retired)
Pratt & Whitney Aircraft, Inc.

Dr. Abernethy is the inventor of the dual cycle engines that power the Blackbirds. He will tell us stories about engineering in the fifties and sixties including the development of the aircraft engines that powered the reconnaissance aircraft of the cold war. The aircraft will include the U2, the YF12, A12, CL400 and the SR-71. The Lockheed Blackbird, SR-71, still holds all seventeen world speed and altitude records even though it was designed forty eight years ago.

From the failure of the sr-71 competitor (suntan) they developed the engine for rockets engines (RL-10) that are still in production today.


Here's his website:
edit on 26/10/10 by C0bzz because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 05:12 AM
reply to post by C0bzz


Thanks for sharing that.

I look forward to looking at it tomorrow.

Kind regards
Maybe...maybe not

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 09:38 AM
reply to post by C0bzz

Very nice, i love Blackbirds, who doesn't right?

Top tier of my all time greats..SR-71, YF-23, B-2.

edit on 26-10-2010 by Cosmic4life because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 09:39 AM
This seems to be a PDF version of the same thing, but with some more details:

here (if that link is broken)
edit on 26/10/10 by C0bzz because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 10:10 AM

I thought you guys might like this picture. I painted it a few years back - a truly majestic aircraft.


posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 11:02 AM
Those planes are all engines. crazy. just think what we have today that we will not know about for 50 years!
edit on 26-10-2010 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 02:25 PM
for those who love the Habu, here's a short and amusing story from Mr. Brian Shul.


I was flying the SR-71 out of RAF Mildenhall, England, with my back-seater, Walt Watson; we were returning from a mission over Europe and the Iron Curtain when we received a radio transmission from home base. As we scooted across Denmark in three minutes, we learned that a small RAF base in the English countryside had requested an SR-71 flypast. The air cadet commander there was a former Blackbird pilot, and thought it would be a motivating moment for the young lads to see the mighty SR-71 perform a low approach. No problem, we were happy to do it. After a quick aerial refueling over the North Sea, we proceeded to find the small airfield.

visit the link to read the full story.

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 04:16 PM
I watched it, it was awesome.

I was itching to ask that if they started work on the SR-71 Blackbird in the late 50's, wtf do they have now?

At the end my heart almost jumped out of my chest when the internet question was about why the SR-71 was retired, and I think he answered it as well as anyone who holds classified information can.

For those without an hour to kill, he responded saying something along the lines of:

They were retired because satellites were supposed to be able to do anything they could. However everyone knows exactly when a satellite is due, so they put things away when they know a satellite is coming overhead. This is why you need an aircraft, you can't see them coming and you catch better pictures that way.

I took this to basically mean the reason they told YOU was that now a satellite was going to do it, however a satellite can't do what a plane does. Basically saying there are still planes or we are less protected than we were in the cold war.

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 04:42 PM
Wow, I live on RAF Mildenhall.. I never imagined that they've flown Blackbirds out of there.. O.o

posted on Oct, 26 2010 @ 05:34 PM
reply to post by toreishi

most excellent reading....led me to several more links.....great link!

posted on Nov, 4 2010 @ 03:24 PM
High res pics

posted on Nov, 4 2010 @ 11:54 PM
reply to post by pogliaghi

Great work Mike , top shelf detail and light , one of my favorites as well. I dabble when the rare mood strikes me but I would love to have your talents. The subject matter would be the same .

posted on Nov, 23 2010 @ 02:41 AM
Nice find.
If you liked that, you may want to try: Ignition! An informal history of liquid rocket propellants, by John D Clark.
He was (rather obviously) a rocket fuel chemist, and although the chemistry in the book can sometimes be quite hard work (as in better than 50% of my time reading was reading wikipedia and anywhere else I could to figure it out), it is on whole a witty account of an interesting time.

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