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Cold Warrior

By patspeirs  
Cold Warrior

After many years this Vulcan has been refurbished to the extent that it now appears regularly at UK airshows. The last of a truly iconic classic the Vulcan really follows the old adage - 'if it looks right, it flies right'. Designed from a spec laid down in 1946 the outcome was an aircraft capable of near Mach 1.0 and with a service ceiling well over 65,000ft - no fighter could touch it in the early days.

From 1957 until the early 80’s the Vulcan was at the heart of the NATO MAD ethos (MAD - Mutually Assured Destruction) with nuclear armed Vulcans, Victors and Canberras poised for take-off in less then three minutes at many bases throughout Europe. The first class flight performance of the Vulcan was demonstrated by the series of Skyshield exercises held in the early 60’s when Vulcans successfully ’attacked’ New York, Chicago and Washington - penetrating at heights around 100ft. Serious red faces in the USAF military!

There was considerable discussion when the type was introduced about the disparity in crew escape facilities as only the pilots had ejection seats and the rear crew members (navs and electronics ops) were left to struggle out the entrance/exit door. This was starkly illustrated when the first operational Vulcan, returning to an official reception at London airport after a round -the-world flag waving trip crashed on the approach attempting to land in poor conditions. The pilots ejected, the other crew members were lost. In all, 10 Vulcans were lost during squadron service - on four occasions only both pilots survived, on two events all crew escaped and on four occasions all crew were killed. Even in peacetime the numbers start to add up.

This image captured by Connor - with a setting introduced from my own desk - so well captures the style of the 'old friend' - was it really over 45 yrs ago!!!

Tags: Vulcan Aircraft Digital art

Voters: jennialexander, BillyGoatGruff, Techno and 32 more

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Comments


dusfim 6 Malta
11 Jan 2011 10:47AM
Fantastic shot, plus a very informed information on the Vulcan. Around thirty years ago one huge Vulcan crashed in Malta. We still keep calling this crash the miracle of the Vulcan. Only one woman was killed.when the Vulcan had fallen in the middle of the Zabbar village. Dusfim

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11 Jan 2011 10:59AM

Quote:Fantastic shot, plus a very informed information on the Vulcan. Around thirty years ago one huge Vulcan crashed in Malta. We still keep calling this crash the miracle of the Vulcan. Only one woman was killed.when the Vulcan had fallen in the middle of the Zabbar village. Dusfim


In 1975 the Vulcan undershot the runway at Luqa damaging the undercarriage and wing, going round again for another landing attempt the aircraft broke up and crashed in the village. All crew and one unfortunate woman civilian were killed.
Pat
11 Jan 2011 11:02AM
Wonderful image once again Pat

Chris
helenlinda Plus
9 344 22 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 11:10AM
Great shot and a fascinating write up - how sad that these only provided escape for the pilots.
Helen
LynneJoyce Plus
8 20 99 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 11:21AM
Great shot and a fascinating write up. I am much amused by the expression,

"Serious red faces in the USAF military, " but saddened by the loss of life among the crews.
11 Jan 2011 1:15PM
Excellent
pluffy 9 166 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 3:10PM
A cracking image of an incredible plane.
Well done.
Steve
VivienO 6 1 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 8:07PM
Fantastic plane and image
Vivien
andypitstop 12 90 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 8:07PM
Cracking shot.. Thanks for the comments you left on mine...Andy
Shroomer 9 14 167 England
11 Jan 2011 8:13PM
Cracking work and such an informative narrative Pat.
A name from the past you might know 'Paddy Mallooly'
Richard
11 Jan 2011 9:33PM
No recollection Richard and I guess I wouldn't forget that name - best crew mate and skipper was 'Curly' Goodwin. Thanks for the input.
Pat
UBOAT 9 41 Scotland
11 Jan 2011 9:46PM
A wonderful composition Grampa and looks very familiar to me and will explain later.

connor
Jestertheclown 8 7.4k 249 England
11 Jan 2011 9:59PM
Like it Pat.

Bren.
Nicely done and, as always, an interesting and informative read.

Michael
alansnap Plus
12 577 26 United Kingdom
14 Jan 2011 9:15AM
An excellent composition as ever Pat and very interesting detail.
Alan
teocali Plus
8 441 18 England
15 Jan 2011 12:15PM
Superb work showing this iconic aircraft off to full advantage Pat. Wonderful description to complement a stunning image.
Sylvia
viscostatic 10 35 5 United Kingdom
5 Jul 2011 10:05PM
Beautiful and fascinating.

Phil.

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