plan_D said:Since I didn't provide any source for my claim on the P.1A super-cruise;
"The resulting English Electric P.1A flew on 4 August 1954, and later exceeded Mach 1 on two unreheated and rather basic Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire turbojets."
The Encyclpopedia of World Air Power - Hamlyn Publishing - Bill Gunston (1980).
"The first prototype, designated the P.1, took to the air on the 4th of August 1954, piloted by Roland Beamont, EE's chief test pilot. Powered by Sapphire engines, on its third flight (on the 11th) it exceeded Mach 1 in level flight, the first British aircraft to do so. Reheat (afterburner) had not been used; supercruise was here a hell of a long time before the Americans and their ATF programme!"
Other interesting notes for the Lightning:
I believe I mentioned the lack of sales for the Lightning in another thread being due to the British government:
"While the P.1 had survived the Defence White Paper, export prospects practically disappeared. In later months, the government even went so far as to sabotage English Electric's own efforts to sell the aircraft to Germany - after frustrating and fruitless attempts to sell the aircraft to the Luftwaffe, EE discovered a government representative was actually telling the Germans not to buy the aircraft!"
The P.1B seems to have been super-cruise capable also:
"On the 4th of April 1957 the first P.1B flew. On this flight it also exceeded Mach 1 without using reheat. In July, the world air speed record (then at mach 1.72) had been broken."
Innovations of Lightning include many things but here's just two:
"The Lightning shared a number of innovations first planned for the Miles M.52 including the shock cone and all-flying tailplane, the latter described by Chuck Yeager as the single most significant contribution to the final success of supersonic flight."
please read the last line of my post these are not my views but some other guys in the website I'll still say the thing had no legs which is a huge disadvantage for an interceptor and your raf ground crews are good keeping any aircraft as complex as a interceptor airborne particularly 20- 30 years ago was a labour intensive endeavour I know in the caf the maintainers shifts lasted until all were servicableplan_D said:pbfoot, your attempts to belittle the Lightning are futile. My father refers to the Lightning as the "Frightening" - it was it's nickname. Why? Because it was fast and scary, extremely dangerous to the enemy. Plus, it rhymes with the Lightning - I know, we really are that inventive.
There is no problem with having a drag chute on landing, and while the landing speed was high - pilots were trained well. All fighter pilots have to be properly trained in "their" aircraft. Even in World War II - pilots transferring from one plane to another were best served to have flight time in their new aircraft in training before taking it out for a "spin".
There's no surprise in the low accident rate, it was a nice aircraft to fly and the pilots were trained. And in all my fathers years with the Lightnings, he only ever saw one have an engine fire while in the air and it made it down safely.
The range of the Lightning was not a problem for it's purpose, and the F.6 Lightning had an added ventral fuel tank which increased it's range still further. 400 miles is enough of a distance to be there, especially because it's up first before anyone else.
And that last statement is downright bullsh*t - everyone involved with the Lightning, and even those that weren't, were sad to see it go. The pilots loved the Lightning more than anything else they might have flown. It was sorely missed, and the last airshow at Binbrook brought tears to many people's eyes. Every station in Britain had a final flypast of the Lightning - and it was sad time for the entire RAF.
As a weapon's system the Lightning was fine. It was a point interceptor. It was designed to be there first while everything else took it's time to get in the air.
And the reason Britain sold Saudi Arabia Lightnings is because the Lightnings we sold were worn out and old. We gave them a shine, added hard-points then called old F.3s, F.53s - then we bribed the Saudi diplomats into buying them ...because they knew the F.3 was old. And the airframes we were selling were worn out. No where near the capability of the newer F.6 Lightnings - which had properly trained RAF mechanics keeping them in tip-top shape.
I know in the caf the maintainers shifts lasted until all were servicable
the thing had no legs which is a huge disadvantage for an interceptor