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Sikorsky’s Sea Kings No Longer Rule the Waves

 

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The prototype Sikorsky HSS-2 Sea King made its’ first flight on March 11, 1959. There are still some later-built versions in use today, some sixty years ago, attesting to the design’s usefulness and reliability. Sikorsky Aircraft began manufacturing the HSS-2 helicopter after winning a 1957 competition for an anti-submarine warfare helicopter for the U.S. Navy. First operational in 1961, the large, amphibious craft was the first Navy helicopter powered by turbine engines, and its’ waterborne handling capabilities lent itself for naval search and rescue as well. By 1962, under the Tri-Service aircraft designation system, the type became known as the SH-3. Read more »

THE RUMBLE OF THUNDER OVER MICHIGAN 2018

IMG_7219 (2) (1000x373) The Ypsilanti MI based Yankee Air Museum hosts the annual Thunder Over Michigan Air Show at the Willow Run International Airport. We just took a look at the aircraft that brought the “Thunder” to the 2018 airshow, we now turn our attention to the Radials of the 2018 show. Thunder Over Michigan 2018 brought together its usual compliment of piston powered aircraft to Willow Run. While it was the United States Air Force Thunderbirds that brought the “Thunder”, there were also several other fighters, bombers and warbirds that brought there own rumble to the skies over Ypsilanti. Read more »

Hyakuri Air Base Open Day and F-4 Phantom Showcase

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An air base open day was held on 2 December 2018 at Hyakuri Air Base (RJAH) in Ibaraki Prefecture, marking the start of the transition of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (Koku Jeitai or JASDF) from the McDonnell Douglas (Mitsubishi Heavy Industries construction-built) F-4 Phantom II to the Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II, with the 302nd Hikotai (Tactical Fighter Squadron) planned to stand its phantoms down in February, 2019.

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DEFENDERS OF FREEDOM

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Ten miles South of Omaha Nebraska, adjacent to the city of Bellevue Nebraska, one will find Offutt Air Force Base. Offutt has a very rich history dating back to the late 1890’s when Fort Crook was constructed, as a matter of fact many of the original structures are still in use today. In 1918 flying came to Fort Crook in the shape of balloons operated by the United States Army Air Corps. May 6th 1924, the flying portion of Fort Crook was renamed in honor of 1st Lt. Jarvis Offutt. Lt. Offutt was Omaha’s first World War I air casualty, when he died in 1918 from injuries sustained in a training accident in France. In 1940 Offutt was chosen as a location for a bomber plant to be operated by the Glenn L. Martin Company. 531 B-29 Superfortresses would be built here including the B-29’s that would drop Atomic Bombs, Enola Gay and Bockscar. The newly formed United States Air Force would assume command of the base in 1947 and would become the headquarters for the next 40 years of the Strategic Air Command (SAC). In 1992 the Strategic Air Command would be disbanded and the U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) formed at Offutt. Today Offutt’s single 11,703 ft long runway 12/30 is home to the 55th Wing and the 595th Command and Control Group.

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