Monday, June 18, 2007

Way Too Cool

This was just too cool not to steal. I dropped in on Phred's World and found this.

This is a B-1 bomber breaking the sound barrier. Now I come from a Navy family (my Dad worked on the F-14 back in the early 70's when he worked for Grumman's, my brother-in-law was the civilian administrator for the last avionics make over of the F-14 at the Pautuxet NAS) and my favorite shots of supersonic flight is that of an F-14 going supersonic about 200' from an aircraft carrier.
But this is a bomber! And this is Phred's story behind it.

Jet Noise is the Sound of Freedom

A story from a U.S. Soldier somewhere in Afghanistan...

"So we are up in the mountains at about 0100 hrs looking for a bad guy that we thought was in the area. There are ten of us, pitch black, crystal clear night, about 25 degrees. We know there are bad guys in the area; a few shots have been fired but no big deal. We decide that we need air cover and the only thing in the area is a solo B-1 bomber. He flies around at about 20,000 feet and tells us there is nothing in the area.He then asks if we would like a low level show of force. Stupid question. Of course we tell him yes.

The controller who is attached to the team then is heard talking to the pilot. Pilot asks if we want it subsonic or supersonic. Very stupid question.

Pilot advises he is twenty miles out and stand by. The controller gets us all sitting down in a line and points out the proper location. You have to picture this. Pitch black, ten killers sitting down, dead quiet and overlooking this about 30 mile long valley. All of a sudden, way out (below our level) you see a set of four 200' white flames coming at us. The controller says, "Ah-- guys-- you might want to plug your ears".

Faster than you can think a B-1, supersonic, 1000' over our heads, blasts the sound barrier and it feels like God just hit you in the head with a hammer.

He then stands it straight up with 4 white trails of flame coming out and disappears.

"Cost of gas for that: Probably $50,000

Hearing damage: For certain.

Bunch of Taliban thinking twice about shooting at us: Priceless.

Have a nice day from the good 'ol USA!

I get chills just thinking about this. I love the sound of jets. It is indeed the sound of freedom.


A friend of the family has a brother who was a co-pilot for one of these babies. They flew so low once that the air turbulance took a barn right off it's foundation at an air show. And they were subsonic at the time. Oh baby...

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