Written by Frank M. Lin 12/20/2016 5:39 am @ Union City, California – Two fascinating airplanes. Enough said. Check them out.
Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird
Designed in part by Clarence “Kelly” Johnson for Lockheed and its secret division called Skunk Works, this bird was years ahead in innovation. At those heights and speeds, the external temperatures rose above 500° F and somehow the plane and its crew had to stay together. Everything about it had to be carefully considered.
That’s the point of this article. It had to be thought through. In the early 60s no computers existed that could render or even come close to computing how this aircraft should be built. It was all done on drawing boards with pencils, rulers and protractors (if you remember what any of these are.) That’s one incredible feat if you think about it.
What’s even more incredible is that in the 2000s this design was ran through a sophisticated computer program used to design planes. You’re talking about thousands of rivets, angles of the fuselage and about a million other factors that this computer checks for.
The end result? The computer wouldn’t do anything different. The design is as efficient as it could be. It was perfect.
The Lockheed SR-71 “Blackbird” was a long-range, Mach 3+ strategic reconnaissance aircraft that was operated by the United States Air Force. It was developed as a black project from the Lockheed A-12 reconnaissance aircraft in the 1960s by Lockheed and its Skunk Works division. American aerospace engineer Clarence “Kelly” Johnson was responsible for many of the design’s innovative concepts. During aerial reconnaissance missions, the SR-71 operated at high speeds and altitudes to allow it to outrace threats. If a surface-to-air missile launch was detected, the standard evasive action was simply to accelerate and outfly the missile. The SR-71 was designed with a reduced radar cross-section.
The SR-71 served with the U.S. Air Force from 1964 to 1998. A total of 32 aircraft were built; 12 were lost in accidents and none lost to enemy action. The SR-71 has been given several nicknames, including Blackbird and Habu. It has held the world record for the fastest air-breathing manned aircraft since 1976; this record was previously held by the related Lockheed YF-12.
Bonus video #1 – randomly came across this video. As expected these Korean girls can hella dance. Awesome choreography.
Bonus video #2 – super sweet video from the guys at Petrolicious. Stunning video!! Absolutely must watch for gear heads.
Bonus video #3 – the most improbable outside pass done in corner one of a race no less. This will probably never happen again…