Friday, 13 September 2013


On Ricky Mae's things that fly, it simply had to be noted; Voyager 1 has left the solar system. I have Huffington Post to thank for the article, but it helps bring the achievement to bear. That's quite some flight taking 36 years and puts the universe into some kind of human perspective. It takes 36 years for an object travelling through our solar system to be unable to feel the energy of our sun. That's how big our sun is. I wonder where it will be 36 years from now?

Voyager 1 Leaves The Solar System (PICTURES)

Huffington Post UK  |  By Posted:
voyager 1
Artist's rendering shows one of NASA's twin Voyager spacecraft
The Voyager 1 space probe has left the solar system.
After 36 years - and a couple of recent false alarms - Nasa now says that the craft has become the first manmade object to enter inter-stellar space.
Based on data about the hot gas on the edge of our Solar System, scientists can now be sure that the craft left our sun's heliosphere in August 2012.
The Voyager 1 probe was initially launched just to explore the planets of our solar system. But it continued to function beyond its engineers' expectations, and is still transmitting data even now it has left area of our sun's influence.
"Now that we have new, key data, we believe this is mankind's historic leap into interstellar space," said Ed Stone, Voyager project scientist based at the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena. "The Voyager team needed time to analyze those observations and make sense of them. But we can now answer the question we've all been asking -- 'Are we there yet?' Yes, we are."
The remarkably durable craft has now travelled 11 billion miles, trailed at 9 billion miles by its successor, Voyager 2.
Voyager 1 will now travel alone in space, on a course for the star AC +793888 - which it will never reach.
Iconic Voyager Images
17 of 18

Friday, 6 September 2013

Thanks Huffington Post

I thought I simply HAD to include this in my blog - Things That Fly.....can be fatal by all accounts.

Roman Pirozek Dead, New York Teenager Killed After Being Scalped By Own Model Helicopter

Huffington Post UK  |  By   |  Updated: 06/09/2013 15:32 BST
A 19-year-old man has been killed after his remote controlled helicopter fell and struck him on the head.
Roman Pirozek was flying the toy in a Brooklyn park on Thursday when it plummeted out of the sky and scalped him with the rotor blades, ABC News reported.
The avid model helicopter enthusiast's father was at the scene when the tragedy unfolded.
Scroll down for more pictures and video
roman pirozek model helicopter death

Roman Pirozek was the vice president of the Seaview Rotary Wings model helicopter club
Pirozek was pronounced dead when paramedics arrived at the scene, PIX11 revealed. It has been reported the blades sliced off a piece of his skull and slashed his throat.
He was the vice president of model helicopter club Seaview Rotary Wings and had posted several videos of himself flying helicopters on YouTube.
"He was known to be aggressive in his flying and often executed tricks. He was executing a trick when he was struck," a police source told the Wall Street Journal.
Pirozek's sister Amy told the paper: "He was the best person ever. He had the biggest heart. He always protected me. He was a good brother, I'll never forget that."

Things That Fly - OMG Asian Killer Hornets....On Their Way to the UK???

Being a UK resident, I was struck by a report in the Huffington Post September 6th 2013. Though the focus of this blog was to be mechanical things that fly, but these Hornets are currently in France - and the report tells us it could take up to four years for them to get across the channel, but here they intend to come.....apparently;but who would bet against them. You've hear of 'Angry Birds'
but just look at these menacing creatures. What a complete nightmare.....heading here to the UK, SOON!

I've done a copy and paste job of the report from Huffington post - I don't mind crediting them for this report at all. Infact, they've done the British Government a favour. The big question is - what are they going to do about it - because these monstrous creatures take NO PRISONERS. They don't care what you are - be it a wasp - and more preferably, a hone bee colony - you're on the menu. They can single handedly wipe out the main pollinators in one fell smorgasbord, and that's Britain done for.

I urge any 'green fingered environmentalist' based in the UK to get on to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and raise the alarm REPEATEDLY, until the announce some kind of measures against these MONSTERS...PLEASE!

I know it may sound alarmist, but fours years go by at the snap of a finger, and they're here. Then WE HERE face spiralling food prices and crop failures, because of these beastly creature of monstrous habit. You'll know them when you see them. O God, HELP!!

Swarms of 'angry' killer Asian hornets heading to Britain

Swarms of 'angry' Asian hornets heading to Britain

Swarms of vicious Asian hornets with a nasty sting in their tail are heading across the Channel from France to Britain, according to reports.

According to the Daily Mail, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) warns the hornets could spread over the UK throughout September.

A DEFRA statement said these "invasive and predatory" insects have "spread very quickly to many areas of France where it is reported to be causing many problems for both beekeepers and biodiversity in the country. The hornet can predate on bee colonies, causing significant harm."

The bee-eating invaders, which can grow up to 1.2 inches long, are a threat to UK wildlife - preying on wasps and other pollinators as well as honeybees - and perhaps even human health, warns a recent report from the European Environment Agency (EEA).

The Asian hornet - distinguishable by its dark colour and yellow feet - has already invaded France, almost wiping out its bee population and attacking humans.

It is thought the species arrived in south western France from the Far East in a shipment of Chinese pottery in late 2004.

They settled in the Aquitaine area, but spread rapidly along the waterways. Their arrival in Britain was predicted by Franck Muller of the Museum of National History in Paris back in February 2011, when he told the Daily Telegraph they would cross into Britain within "three to four years".

Over the past few years, several attacks on humans have been reported. In 2009, hundreds of the insects attacked a mother out walking with her five-month old baby in the Lot-et-Garonne department, before turning on a neighbour who ran over to help. They then pursued two passers-by and two Dutch tourists on bikes.

And, it seems, Asian hornets are not the only insects we will contend with in September. It seems wasps, which have been conspicuously absent over much of summer, will be back with a vengeance this month.

Matt Shardlow, of insect conservation trust Buglife, told The Sun: "This time of year the female workers, who have been busy raising the brood, run out of things to do as baby wasps reach full development.

"When this happens they get a taste for sugar and alcohol, bringing them into contact with people.

"Wasps should be treated with caution, particularly around their nests. Waft them away, don't swat. Wasps are belligerently defensive and if you annoy them then they will respond."

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Bitish Airways to Get 18 Dreamliners!

On Wednesday April 3rd 2013, I was minding my own business watching the news - like you do, when suddenly an announcement was made. British Airways is to order 18 Dreamliners, to replace its ageing fleet of the Boeing's 747's. I remember thinking - ''You can't be serious!''. ''What's wrong with what Airbus has got to offer - or has Airbus suddenly got nothing to interest British Airways with?'' It's surprising what emotions such an announcement can stir in the average listener to such broadcasted news, but stir them they do. I simply had to find out what British Airways thought it was playing at, ordering so many Dreamliners. They could have sourced planes closer to home, from Airbus; and let's face it, we need the jobs at home in Europe.Just this week I heard that unemployment has risen quite dramatically in the Euro zone. I had to investigate.

                  Boeing 787 taking off and                                  landing.  

Upon further investigation, I find that the order for 18 Dreamliners are meant mainly for the Iberian arm of British Airways. IAG, which stands for International Airlines Group, came into being when British Airways merged with Iberian Airways back in 2011. This merger gave British airways access to the latin American routes and markets. Everyone was doing it back then, because airlines on their own were(it seemed back then)afraid that they wouldn't be able to 'make it on their own', or so they feared. KLM merged with Air France - there are other examples.
The problem for British Airways is its fleet is such an old one. It operates some 52 Boeing 747s, which is more than many other airlines operate, and they are 17 years old, or about that age. It is time for them to upgrade their fleets.
Further investigation reveals that the 18 dreamliners are meant for the Iberian arm of IAG, but it is subject to Iberian airways restructuring it's business to get back into profitability. I wonder when that's going to be?
Iberian Airways wanted to cut 4,500 jobs to even out its cost base. Well, that's fighting talk isn't it? Yes it is, and understandably, strikes ensued. Then a government appointed mediator got in on negotiations, and a compromise was reached. Iberia agreed to a 3,100 cut in jobs, and that seemed to satisfy all, except those whose jobs were cut, but it could lead to the Spanish airline reaching some kind of platform to build profitability from.
The order for 18 Dreamliners is dependent upon Iberia showing some kind of stability, and moving on towards profit, and then - and only then will the Dreamliners be released to Iberia. Like I asked earlier, WHEN? Well, whenever it does, IAG has an agreement to buy the 18 Dreamliners at the catalogue price of $4bn. A discount on that price is expected, though it is subject to shareholder approval. I'm sure they'll get the discount. Discount or not, this is great news for Boeing, even though there are(or was back then) still problems with the Lithium-ion batteries. People still had faith that the Dreamliner will be in business.
The Federal Aviation Administration, the US regulator will be reviewing the changes that Boeing make to the Dreamliner's batteries, with a view to allowing it to resume commercial flights again in either May or June.
This I must see.
So, the deal is all in the realms of IF, could and maybe. It all depends of how well, and how fast Iberia get their act together, and get into profitability. Anybody holding their breath?
I do hope not!

It just goes to show, that all is not what it seemed to be. Nowhere is there any talk of British Airways getting new planes for its own fleet; they are all for Iberia IF they can get their act together and get into profitability. So, I needn't have gotten so agitated and worked up over the news, that British Airways orders 18 Dreamliners. Here at I will be keeping an eye on developments at British Airways and Iberia. If delivery of 18 Dreamliners is dependent on Iberia getting it together, it could take a while!

But what do you think?
Leave a comment!

Airbus A380 and the International J-Nose Connection

Airbus A380 and the International J-Nose Connection

Airbus A380 and the International J-nose connection sounds like a great title, full of international intrigue - and it is as it sounds. The Airbus A380's wings are products of international collaboration and co-operation. It started with the manufacture of the special aluminium panels - of which there are ten per wing, and the joining together of the panels to the wings skeleton in Wales, UK. Now I have to move over to where other parts of the A380's wings are made, and to see what Airbus Bristol UK and Stork Fokker AESP (Hoogeveen, The Netherlands) have to do with its production. A lot of technologies have been brought into play to make the Airbus A380's wings the most advanced on a modern airliner currently flying today. So far we have discovered that the UK, the Netherlands and France have worked together - and have been doing so for quite a few years now, with one goal in mind; to pull off and bring to market, the most advanced and the biggest modern commercial aircraft currently serving the worlds airliners today.

A380's J-nose in production
So what is this 'J-Nose' of the A380? The J-Nose is the leading outer edge of the A380's wing, called the J-Nose because of it's distinctive profile. However, before there was the J-nose there was the D-Nose. The D-Nose was the leading edge of the A340's wings. They were the heavier five part aluminium leading edges that were used until 2002, as they were made first. However, Airbus wanted to make savings in the weight department, so a lighter replacement was needed. Airbus UK in Bristol England, and Stork Fokker AESP (Hoogeveen, The Netherlands) collaborated together and came up with a development that Airbus was pleased with. The design requirements that Airbus had set to make the wings as light as possible were met. The requirements also included protection from bird strikes and debris from runways and other sources. The key development was the collaboration that produced the thermoplastic composites that the J-Nose is made from.
You can see the 'J' of the nose of the leading edge.

Thermoplastics make up two thirds of the leading edge of the A380's wings, and there are eight parts per wing. Engineers in collaboration, redesigned the A340's thermoplastic composites to take advantage of the thermoplastic toughness and the relative ease with which it can be processed. Thermoplastics were found to be preferable to thermocites because the fibres do not cross-link, they do not cure, and they don't require a catalyst. It was discovered that by simply heating the thermoplastic to a temperature that exceeded the glass transition temperatures (T.g) they could be moulded, and would hold their shape when they were cooled. It was also discovered that the thermoplastics could be heated and cooled, reshaped and moulded without any loss to the of integrity of the materials or their properties, and that fact represented savings in costs and efficiencies in fabrication.
Stork Fokker had been experimenting with Reinforced Thermoplastic Composites (RTC) since the 1980's. They had been using them in aeronautical applications and learning about their capabilities. They learned what effects welding had on these materials and the efficiencies that welding afforded the fabricating process. Welding could be more targeted, and because of this, it could be automated in production. It was found that the fibres when welded, merged into a whole - or thoroughly intermixed, becoming a single part. It therefore didn't need to be bolted or riveted, and thus proved to be a labour saver, which added to the efficiencies and savings that were being sought. The J-Nose is a product of the experimentation which proved to be just what the A380 needed to give it the revolutionary wings which it flies upon.
Meet the J-nose production team!

J-nose connection, international j-nose, airbus a380s, reinforced thermoplastic composites

Research and technologies have definitely played a major part in the production of the A380,with cooperation from three countries in Europe. We get to see just how interesting the technologies can be, and these technologies inspire creations and blaze trails for others to follow.Things that fly need wings! looks into the reasons that the A380 is a flyaway success, and a worthy rival to the iconic 747, but it's mainly due to its wings...

Dreamliner Boeing 787 nightmare

The Dreamliner is the latest creation to be added to the burgeoning stables of Boeing, the creator of the much vaunted and iconic 747. Back in the mid to late 1990's when the Airbus A380 was being created, Boeing looked around for a new plane that would have a certain impact of the airline industry, as much as the A380 would. It was argued that airports would not want the hassle of having to enlarge their aprons and other related infrastructures for an aircraft the size of the A380. The wisdom that prevailed in the Boeing camp was that, in the future, airlines wanted to fly directly to their destinations and avoid changing at 'hub' airports. Part of the reasoning was to do with cutting down of emissions of carbon (dioxide) that increase green house gasses and assist in the process known as global warming.

Boeing wanted to be able to fly their passengers further in a lighter aircraft, but still give good value for money where the payload was concerned. They intended to do this with the aid of modern technology, by using a special light weight airframe. It is made of 20% aluminium, 15% titanium, 10% steel and 5% from other materials; with half of the plane being made from composite materials and carbon fibre. The Lithium-ion batteries are under review, as they are a major source of distress for Boeing at the moment. The Dreamliner had become a bit of a nightmare, if the truth be known.
Boeing's Chief Executive, Jim McNerney has awoken to the terrors of having to express ''deep regrets'' to frustrated airlines who are waiting for the deliveries of their increasingly long awaited planes. The Dreamliner's problems stem from outsourcing. It was later noted that the jobs would get outsourced to where-ever, only to have to be put right at Boeing when the job lots were taken delivery of. All this only means that languages, logistics, different cultures, lack of communication, and incorrect instructions, only served to lengthen the chain of production. All these things added three years to the production times of the aircraft. Outsourcing proved to be more than a bit of a nightmare for the Boeing 787, better known as the Dreamliner.
Outsourcing It has definitely proved to be a bit of a false economy for Boeing, as well as a major headache in this instance. Given that 850 of the planes have been ordered, I think it would have made sense to try to produce all the components at home in the US. It could have created at least a million jobs, given that the Dreamliner has over 2 million components.Boeing's creativity would have found a way to make use of the infrastructures that fell out of use, when the 787 was no longer being produced.
Things That Fly includes the Boeing 787, the Dreamliner. It's a pity that we don't know when it will be given the all clear to take to the air. will be keeping an eye on developments at the Dreamliner, because when it actually does fly, it really is quite a feat of modern technology.

Since this article was written, The Dreamliner has since taken to the skies again, on April 29th 2013.

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Introducing the RC Airbus A380.................

 Now, this is what I'm talking about.....a radio controlled ETIHAD scaled version of the Airbus A380; this is what I would want in my Xmas stocking - not that it would fit in it.
Of course, you would need a park handy to fly it from.                                                                                                                                                              

I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw this radio controlled model sized A380, that actually flew.
After a brief taxi up the runway, it takes off, and flies. Unbelievable. 
I love the sound of it's engines, sounds so real.

Uploaded on 5 Dec 2011
1:15 Scale RC Airbus A380-900 In factory Paint Constructed and Flown by Reinhard Oetken.

1:15 Scale.  Span: 5.5m; Length: 6.2m,  Weight: 97kg.

Please, select the code, right click on it, select open in new window, and the ebay page will come up. I've tried to link the page but I'm not having much luck! Please email me if you know how to do it. Sorry about that!

Price ranges from £315 to £263, and there is also a toy RC version available at £35 for Kids. I think you'll find seriously fully grown men buying them for their 'kids' - their inner kids - I doubt if their children would even get a look in once their dads got their hands on these toys!
Radio Controlled A380.

Video is of a fully constructed A380!

The Airbus A380 is a world renowned passenger jet! This is a 60” wingspan Quad Brushless Motor replica of the FULL Size Airbus! She has all the beauty and stability of an actual airliner! Made beautiful with scale appearance and scale decals! The construction is full EPO foam for the highest in durability and best in performance! Scale landing gears and the very unique sound of FOUR Electric Ducted Fan Jet Units! The sound is just awesome! Her flying performance is awesome! Plenty of power and she floats like a big glider! The scale performance is what sets this A380 apart! Clean smooth passes with gorgeous banking turns! Landings are super soft with a gorgeous nose up flair that is so familiar with all airliner landings! If you didn’t know she was RC, you would think twice because it looks just REAL in flight! This is what RC is all about! For the many of us that at one time growing up, dreamed about piloting your own fighter jet or Airliner, this is your ticket to realize your dream! 

Can't wait until I can afford one of my own!

A380 taking off