Happy Tuesday. I hope the weather where you are is as beautiful as it is here. Simply gorgeous. I can’t wait to get out and enjoy it. I think a good book and a comfy chair in the sunshine sounds about right.
Being the pilot and aerospace engineer that we are, or as my professor likes to call us, “the dynamic duo”, we enjoy air shows. The Pilot tends to view them different now that he flies a pointy fast jet, but he just sees them in a whole new light. In his words, “You can’t enjoy your own air show.” Spoken like a true fighter pilot. We went to the Golden Wings Over Meridian Air Show. Meridian NAS (Naval Air Station) is about an hour south of here.
This was the first air show I’ve been to since I got my new camera. Let’s just say I had fun.
|F/A-18 Superhornet (afterburners)|
|F/A-18 Superhornet high speed pass (just under Mach 1 – no sonic booms at air shows)|
You probably noticed in a few of the pictures that there looks like steam coming off the aircraft and in the last picture it looks like the aircraft is blurry. It is not blurry, it is vapor. It is the air’s response to the sudden change of pressure created by a disturbance (the moving aircraft). This concept is called compressibility and it is currently the story of my life. Compressibility is often neglected for low speeds flows but as you can see from the high speed pass picture, the faster the speed, the effects of compressibility become greater. If you have ever taken a physics class, a lot of problems will tell you to neglect friction. You and I both know that gravity works and friction is everywhere. It’s analogous to compressibility: everything can be compressed to some extent (black holes?) and so now in grad school, I’m dealing with more practical, if you will, problems and yes, we must consider compressibility. Welcome to my world. I could take this further and explain to you how compressed pressure waves lead to sonic booms (flows greater than Mach 1) but I just realized that you may not find this as fascinating as I do and I really want you to keep reading my blog. Sorry…here’s more pictures!
|Torjan Horsemen Flight Demo Team
Raw power and finesse aerial formation aerobatics.
Very similar to the T-38 that Alex flew in UPT.
We were really excited that the F-16 Fighting Falcon demo team was at this air show. Flying this bad boy is going to be Alex’s job soon!
And, of course, the Navy Blue Angels. They fly the F/A-18 Hornet. They demonstrate aerial formation so flawlessly and with such precision, it looks easy breezy beautiful cover girl. But just ask Alex about formation flying – he’ll tell you otherwise. It’s a lot of work.
|C-130, aka, Fat Albert
You can see the F/A-18s landing in the background.
|C-17 on static|
It was a fun air show. We’re planning on going to the Barksdale AFB air show the first weekend in May. They have an F-22 Raptor demo team. We haven’t seen that performance yet. It’s a really cool jet, just google it and see for yourself.