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By Robert C. Stern

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Technicians initiated aircraft system and payload checks one hour before scheduled takeoff time, with Vincent G. ” 41 42 Interview with Vincent G. Ambrosia. 22 Chariots of Fire The Altus II was used for the First Response Experiment (FiRE) at El Mirage in September 2001. A sensor package on board successfully transmitted data to scientists at NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field. NASA “hands off” all systems about 30 minutes later. Altus II took off immediately after a controlled burn was ignited adjacent to the runway.

73 During these four sorties, the Ikhana flew a total of 56 hours, operating in the national airspace for nearly 50 hours. 74 The Ikhana team also collected post-fire burnassessment imagery over various fires to aid teams in fire ecosystem rehabilitation on those major events. html, 2008, accessed June 10, 2009. The first WSFM flight took place Aug. 16 and was limited to about 10 hours duration in order to verify planning and coordination procedures. During an unexpectedly short pre-mission teleconference, representatives of the FAA ARTCCs accepted route plans submitted by the NASA team even though one wildfire was at the 75 nmi limit from the Route A backbone.

If the aircraft loses thrust – due to engine or propeller malfunction, or any other reason – an emergency landing site must be identified within the Ikhana’s gliding distance based on mission altitude. At a cruising altitude of 23,000 feet, the aircraft can glide for approximately 50 nmi. Planners determined secondary emergency landing sites spaced no more than 100 nmi apart throughout the entire area defined by each COA. Additionally, a runway of at least 4,000 feet in length, and preferably 5,000, is necessary for a safe landing.

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America’s Fighters of the 1980s: F-16 and F-18 (Warbirds Illustrated 17) by Robert C. Stern


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