Debra Cleghorn

8.4 million dollars can buy HOW many RC planes?

May 30, 2011 1 Comment

Park flyer pilots aren’t the only folks who appreciate the convenience and accessibility of small RC aircraft: the U.S. Army just ordered $8,400,000 worth of digital Raven systems from AeroVironment! These 4.2-pound planes can be transported by backpack and hand-launched, and they proved to be an invaluable asset to small combat units. AeroVironment notes, “The [...]

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Wall Street Journal Top Gun Story

May 24, 2011 1 Comment

The provocative title, ”Earthbound Jet Jockeys Caught in Dogfight with FAA: Hobbyists flying fastest model planes resist rules aimed at drones,” will certainly get a lot of attention! Susan Carey, who writes about aviation issues for the Wall Street Journal, was at the Lakeland, Florida event to get the inside scoop on how elite modelers were [...]

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Area 51: fake planes kept the Soviets guessing

May 24, 2011 1 Comment

Recently declassified documents and photos from the infamous Area 51 in the Nevada desert show that the U.S. built fake prototype planes out of cardboard and even put heaters near the models to mimic the heat from a just-landed afterburner engine! The U.S. military knew that shadows from the planes could be detected by Soviet [...]

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DHC-1 Chipmunk turns 65!

May 23, 2011 No Comments

This weekend, the North London Flying Club celebrated the 65th anniversary of the first flight of the DCH-1 Chipmunk! This full-size aircraft association is based out of the Panshanger Aerodrome in the UK.  The DCH-1 trainer was actually designed by the Canadian branch of deHavilland, and 1283 Chipmunks were produced in total. The next celebration [...]

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IMAA “Build a Big Bird” Winners!

May 18, 2011 1 Comment

The winners of the IMAA’s “Build a Big Bird” contest were announced at Joe Nall last week; congratulations not only to the winners but to everyone who participated. The IMAA (International Miniature Aircraft Association) is an AMA special interest group dedicated to flying and promoting gian-scale aircraft, and this contest was open to new and [...]

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New unmanned aircraft: Boeing Phantom Ray

May 17, 2011 10 Comments

The latest in Boeing’s lineup of unmanned airborne systems, the Phantom Ray completed its first flight at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base, California. During the 17-minute test flight, the Phantom Ray reached speeds of 178 knots. Craig Brown, program manager for Phantom Ray, notes, “The first flight moves us farther into [...]

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A great aviation read

May 16, 2011 No Comments

Unbroken: A WW II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption, by Laura Hillenbrand There’s not much better than being in the middle of a great book: it’s a treat meant to be savored but one that I sometimes end up gobbling in just a few sessions. At the moment, I’m just a few chapters into Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand, and [...]

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Royal DC-3

May 10, 2011 2 Comments

Check this out: the smaller DC-3 in the foreground is actually a 14-inch-span Buffalo Airways diecast model, and the larger plane is an RC model built from an old Royal kit! The project was a collaboration between Jack Yablonski, who provided the kit, Wilf Ansel, who built it, and Robert Yablonski, who will fly it [...]

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