Radschool Association Magazine - Vol 31
Allan George's Gems.
Aussie Hercs clock up 20,000 operational hours.
The RAAF’s airborne workhorse, the C-130 Hercules, has just exceeded 20,000 flying hours supporting Australian and Coalition troops in the Middle East. This significant milestone was reached during a mission to aero-medically evacuate Australian soldiers wounded in an Improvised Explosive Device strike late last week. Pilot of the C-130J to break the mark, Flight Lieutenant Glen Foster said it was a major achievement for the detachment to reach 20,000 operational hours.
“It’s a credit not only to the aircrew, but to the maintainers who keep the Hercs in the air and the support provided by Defence Materiel Organisation’s Air Lift Systems Program Office,” Flight Lieutenant Foster said. (The what???? – tb)
Three of the RAAF’s C-130 Hercules aircraft and crews have been deployed in the Middle East since February 2003. The original deployment was done by 36 Squadron with their C-130H model aircraft and these were joined by the newer C-130J models of 37 Squadron on a rotational basis in September 2004. Eventually, in mid 2008, 37 Squadron took sole responsibility for the Middle East deployment. The three aircraft average about 50 hours in the air each week and are supported by an intensive maintenance program. When a big rotation of troops into and out of Afghanistan is required, two aircraft are used each day.
Proactive maintenance by the ground crew has provided high aircraft availability and mission success rates. In the 20,000 operational flying hours, crews have flown more than 11,300 sorties and the aircraft have transported more than 140,000 personnel and nearly 31,000,000 kilograms of cargo. The aircraft supports Australia’s commitment to Afghanistan under Operations SLIPPER and PALATE II and the remaining Australian forces in Iraq under Operations RIVERBANK and KRUGER.
Moral to this story, if you're a pilot and you want flying hours – get posted to a transport squadron……..
Hoover Dam Bridge.
Creeping closer inch by inch, 900 feet above the mighty Colorado River, the two sides of a $160 million bridge at the Hoover Dam slowly take shape. The bridge will carry a new section of US Route 93 past the bottleneck of the old road which can be seen twisting and winding around and across the dam itself.
When complete, it will provide a new link between the states of Nevada and Arizona. In an incredible feat of engineering, the road will be supported on the two massive concrete arches which jut out of the rock face.
The arches are made up of 53 individual sections each 24 feet long which have been cast on-site and are being lifted into place using an improvised high-wire crane strung between temporary steel pylons.
The arches will eventually measure more than 1,000 feet across. At the moment, the structure looks like a traditional suspension bridge. But once the arches are complete, the suspending cables on each side will be removed. Extra vertical columns will then be installed on the arches to carry the road. The bridge has become known as the Hoover Dam bypass, although it is officially called the Mike O'Callaghan- Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, after a former governor of Nevada and an American Football player from Arizona who joined the US Army and was killed in Afghanistan. Work on the bridge started in 2005 and should finish in 2010. An estimated 17,000 cars and trucks will cross it every day.
The dam was started in 1931 and used enough concrete to build a road from New York to San Francisco, a straight line distance of 4,125 klm. The stretch of water it created, Lake Mead, which is the largest man made reservoir in the USA, is 180klms long and took six years to fill. The original road was opened at the same time as the famous dam in 1936.
The top of the white band of rock in Lake Mead is the old waterline prior to the drought and development in the Las Vegas area. It is over 100 feet above the current water level.
The USS REAGAN.
When the Bridge pipes 'Man the Rail' there is a lot of rail to man on this monster, the total area “on top” is around 4½ acres. Her displacement is about 100,000 tons with full complement.
Her top speed exceeds 30 knots, and she is powered by two nuclear reactors that can operate for more than 20 years without refuelling
She is expected to operate in the US fleet for about 50 years.
She carries more than 80 combat aircraft and her three arresting cables can stop a 28 tonne aircraft going 240kph in less than 120 metres
1. Towers 20 stories above the waterline.
2. 330 metres long; nearly as long as the Q1 building on the Gold Coast is high.
3. Flight deck covers 4½ acres (1.8ha).
4. 4 bronze propellers, each 6½ metres in diameter, weighing 30,000 kgs.
5. 2 rudders, each 29 by 22 feet and weighing 50 tonnes.
6. 4 high speed aircraft elevators, each over 4,000 sq ft capacity.
7. Home to about 6,000 Navy personnel.
8. Carries enough food and supplies to operate for 90 days.
9. 18,150 meals served daily.
10. Distillation plants provide 400,000 gallons of fresh water from sea water daily, enough for 2,000 homes.
11. Nearly 30,000 light fixtures and 1,325 miles of cable and wiring 1,400 telephones.
12. 14,000 pillowcases and 28,000 sheets.
13. Costs the Navy approximately $250,000 per day for pier side operation.
14. Costs the Navy approximately $25 million per day for underway operations (Sailor's salaries included).
This is worth looking at, just sit back and enjoy and then if you wish, take a closer look at some of the icons in Melbourne. http://www.melbourne.com/
Sam Kekovich, ex North Melbourne footballer, has produced his 2010 lamb chop commercial and you can see it HERE – you know it makes sense!!
Here’s another example of a bloke who’s had 20 or 30 too many. See HERE.
In 2009, Edwards Air Force Base in the US had an open day. If you want to see a bunch of aircraft photos, click HERE.
Got a rat problem – click HERE for a solution (Turn your sound up!!)
Double O Pidgeon.
You have to watch this; the animation is excellent! Click HERE. Sound up!!
Click HERE to see a bunch of still photos of Vung Tau and Saigon, taken back in 1969. Sure to bring back a heap of memories for some.
Want to go water skiing, but don’t have a boat. Well, if you’re in the earth moving business that’s not a problem. See HERE.
The new Ferrari is a wonderful car – and has some specific advantages, see HERE
Now, when it comes to selling washing machines, our TV commercials are usually pretty tame, you see video of pretty housewives washing the kids footy gear or of a retailer with heaps of white machines all lined up on parade or details of how machine A uses a cup less water than machine B etc. But not the Danes – they do it just a little bit differently. See HERE
I suppose if you were under about 6 feet of reinforced concrete during a bombing raid you would think you were pretty safe – well, think again!!. The latest bunker busters will hunt you out and really spoil your day. See HERE. (You'll need Quicktime player to watch this file, you can get it for free HERE)
If you've got a little brother, a dirty great big black dog and a laser pointer - HERE's how to have a bit of fun.
Every now and then you run across a real life, genuine, tru blu, genius. Here's one such person. Makes you proud to be a human.........
Terrorist – what Terrorist??
One thing you can always be sure of is, “There will always be conspiracy theories”.
Take the moon landing in 1969, there are many many people who can PROVE beyond any reasonable doubt that it never took place and that the whole thing was concocted in a Hollywood studio. There are thousands of people who say the Holocaust never took place and who can prove the whole thing was a PR exercise designed to make the Yanks look good after the war. There are even people who say that man made Global Warming doesn’t exist – can you believe that??
Another conspiracy that has been doing the rounds for some time concerns the devastation and tragedy that occurred in the World Trade Centre – now known as 9/11, and the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts that followed.
Recently a 90 minute documentary was released which says that the whole thing was planned and executed by neo-conservatives in the White House for reasons which will benefit the US.
Is it true or is it just another story that came from an LSD party - make up your own mind.
Watch it HERE
This is probably the best response to a "Dear John" letter I have ever seen - see HERE.
This is pretty neat! It's one of those things we're supposed to do every now and then to remove the cholesterol around our brain and try to slow up the inevitability of Alzheimer's Disease. Click on the link below and follow the directions! It's harder than it seems, as it should be! A brain waker-upper for today!
Have fun! Click here to start
This might look funny and a lot of people would probably laugh at it, but it is actually 4 minutes of very, very good flying. See HERE.
The Smiths were unable to conceive children and decided to use a surrogate father to start their family. On the day the proxy father was to arrive, Mr. Smith kissed his wife goodbye and said, 'Well, I'm off now. The man should be here soon.'
Half an hour later, just by chance, a door-to-door baby photographer happened to ring the doorbell, hoping to make a sale. 'Good morning, Ma'am', he said, 'I've come to...' 'Oh, no need to explain,' Mrs. Smith cut in, embarrassed, 'I've been expecting you.' 'Have you really?' said the photographer. 'Well, that's good. Did you know babies are my specialty?' 'Well that's what my husband and I had hoped. Please come in and have a seat !.
After a moment she asked, blushing, 'Well, where do we start?' 'Leave everything to me", he said, "I usually try two in the bathtub, one on the couch, and perhaps a couple on the bed. And sometimes the living room floor is fun. You can really spread out there.' 'Bathtub, living room floor? No wonder it didn't work out for Harry and me!' said Mrs Smith. 'Well, Ma'am, none of us can guarantee a good one every time. But if we try several different positions and I shoot from six or seven angles, I'm sure you'll be pleased with the results.' 'My, that's a lot!', gasped Mrs. Smith.
'Ma'am, in my line of work a man has to take his time. I'd love to be In and out in five minutes, but I'm sure you'd be disappointed with that.' 'Don't I know it,' said Mrs. Smith quietly. The photographer opened his briefcase and pulled out a portfolio of his baby pictures. 'This was done on the top of a bus,' he said. 'Oh, my God!' Mrs. Smith exclaimed, grasping at her throat. 'And these twins turned out exceptionally well - when you consider their mother was so difficult to work with.' 'She was difficult?' asked Mrs. Smith. 'Yes, I'm afraid so. I finally had to take her to the park to get the job done right. People were crowding around four and five deep to get a good look' 'Four and five deep?' said Mrs. Smith, her eyes wide with amazement. 'Yes', the photographer replied. 'And for more than three hours, too. The mother was constantly squealing and yelling - I could hardly concentrate, and when darkness approached I had to rush my shots.
Finally, when the squirrels began nibbling on my equipment, I just had to pack it all in.' Mrs. Smith leaned forward. 'Do you mean they actually chewed on your, uh...equipment?' 'It's true, Ma'am, yes.. Well, if you're ready, I'll set-up my tripod and we can get to work right away.' 'Tripod?' 'Oh yes, Ma'am. I need to use a tripod to rest my Canon on. It's much too big to be held in the hand very long.'
Mrs. Smith fainted.
Most readers will be aware of the US Joint Electronic Technical Designator System used since WWII to identify military electronic equipment used by the USCANZUKUS defence forces (Australia, Canada, New Zealand United Kingdom and USA) now other forces. Some will be familiar with the fit of the RAAF Caribou avionics as delivered from Canada:
AN/ARC 51 BX (UHF),
AN/ARC 73 (VHF),
AN/ARC 102 (HF),
AN/ARC 44 (VHF FM) - replaced by AN/ARC 54 in late 69,
AN/ARN 21C (TACAN) - replaced by the AN/ARN 52 in the early 70s,
VOR was ARN 30D, ILS AN/ARN 31 and the Marker Beacon receiver was the AN/ARN 58,
AN/APX 44 IFF, and
AN/ARN 59 Radio Compass.
There has been much mention of the AN/CPN 4 in the RAM – (see HERE) - note from the link to the designators that C has changed from air transportable to crypto, although I’m not sure how you would have air lifted an AN/CPN 4 before a C17 came along?
Of course Australia has used this designator over many years and there have been some variations of them as well.
In early 1995 I arranged a farewell dinner for three long serving radio engineers who were retiring. AIRCRDE Nev Middleton, GPCAPT Denis Street and GPCAT Jim Downing.
Nev and Denis were both graduates of 11 Radio Apprentice Course (Frognall in 1957-1959) followed by a final year (1960) at Ballart to complete an Engineering Diploma Course (forerunner to Engineering Cadet Squadron Frognall). Nev and Denis were in the 1st apprentice group to be commissioned from Ballart and in the last course at Ballart with Radio School moving to Laverton in 1961. Jim Downing was an RAF retread.
I did up an invitation which I sent to many of the retiring officers’ colleagues requesting their presence at:-
It turned out that many managed to decipher the code as it was a very popular night at RAAF Fairbairn and there were many brown and green bottes consumed as I recall.
I also know of the same equipment, with designator AN/PI55-UP, being listed on the cargo manifest for a deployment or bivouac as the cover story for an esky/fridge etc. Where there is a will there is a way.