F-35 Flight Test Update 14
20 January 2015
The previous F-35 Flight Test Update concluded with F-35A test aircraft AF-3 completing 500 flight hours on 18 March 2013, making AF-3 the second mission systems test Lightning II to reach this milestone. This fourteenth installment in the series of F-35 flight testing reviews presents a large variety of additional milestones for the F-35 test fleet from a monthly flight record for the F-35 CATBird in March to the completion of the initial carrier trials for the F-35C in November.
Blackbirds In Captivity
15 December 2014
Most members of the Blackbird family, be it A-12, YF-12, or SR-71 that are on display around the world.
SR-71 Blackbird: A Fast History
11 December 2014
President Lyndon B. Johnson publicly announced the existence of the classified Lockheed SR-71 program in 1964. First flight of the SR-71 would come on 22 December 1964. Operational aircraft deliveries began in 1966. Throughout its career, the SR-71, unofficially, universally known as Blackbird, remained the world's fastest and highest-flying operational aircraft. The US Air Force terminated the program in January 1990, closing out a twenty-four year operational career. The Blackbird program was briefly revived in 1997 and a small number of training flights were made, but funding was zeroed out. The program officially ended in 1999.
Outstanding Aviation Photos - 2014
6 October 2014
An annual collection from 2014 of recent and stunning aviation photos of Lockheed Martin aircraft.
Look Ma, No Hook
29 September 2014
In 1963, a US Navy aircrew landed a KC-130 on an aircraft carrier—on purpose and more than once.
11 September 2014
U-2 statistics are used at two levels. First to gauge activity across the program. Second to focus on areas requiring continuous improvements in affordability, availability, and reliability.
U-2 Life Support
8 September 2014
Every U-2 flight requires a lot of behind the scenes work. An assortment of engineers, technicians, and flight line personnel line up to support every mission. The high altitudes at which the Dragon Lady operates, however, create a unique set of responsibilities for ground support personnel. Many of these responsibilities fall on the shoulders of life support technicians.
5 September 2014
The U-2 gathers imagery in a number of ways, including through digital imagery, radar imagery, and traditional wet-processed film. Similarly the U-2 collects signals intelligence in various frequency bands with a variety of sensors. Datalinks on the aircraft allow for immediate transmission of sensor data. The U-2 carries an electronic countermeasure system for self-defense.
S-3 Viking Photos
1 September 2014
Selected images of the utilitarian S-3 Viking carrier-based maritime patrol aircraft.
U-2 Dragon Lady Today
26 August 2014
Thirty-four U-2s are flying today. Most were built in the 1980s as TR-1s though a few are U-2Rs built in the late 1960s. All of these aircraft were re-designated U-2S in 1999, with two exceptions. The two-seat trainer version, accounting for five airframes, is referred to as the TU-2S. The NASA version, accounting for two airframes derived from the U-2S, is referred to as the ER-2.