Sunday, June 16, 2019

Postblogging Technology, March 1949, II: A Comet in the Future


Dear Father:

I leave this for you so that you will know that I haven't been wasting my time while enjoying your hospitality. Besides, I don't really know the rules about what an air stewardess can carry along or not. (Although, yes, this is a thin excuse for calling this a finished letter. They do carry overnight bags, which are a lot bigger than a rice paper manuscript!)

So by the time you read this, I will be landing in San Francisco, and exploiting my fake identity to pass through Customs without anyone the wiser. I'd be more dramatic if this weren't your plan; Yours and Wong Lee's. Hopefully, the next stage goes as well, and we have a fait accompli to present to the College Man. Otherwise, Wong Lee will have to go to war for our honour, and I will return across the border at the usual place on Thursday. Since my plans for next year will then all be thrown aside, I retract every unkind thing I said about anyone and everyone when I first heard the suggestion, and humbly throw myself on your mercy. Please do  secure me a late entrance into the University of British Columbia School of Law. 

Yours Sincerely,

Flight, 17 March 1949


"A Doubtful Decision" Flight is upset about the BOAC-BSAA merger because . . . BSAA liked flying boats. At some point I'm going to move on from being amazed at just how dumb Smith is to being upset at how awful he is. Because at some point it goes from being "dumb" to "taking money from Shorts." I don't want to be a cynic, but I just can't think of another explanation at this point. 

"The Debit Side" It was three corporations because of competition or something, so if there's only two corporations, there is less competition. Unless the whole point of BSAA was that there was another way of running an airline that only looked like it was a heedless leap into the wild blue yonder that was going to get passengers killed by the scores. Only there isn't! There isn't another way to run an airline! Therefore, the "competition" is between "sensible people" and "crazy people," and we don't need that competition! 

"Good News for the RAFVR" New hats! Actually, Chipmunks instead of Tiger Moths. But hats. 

"Helicopter Progress: Impressions of Flying in the Gyrodyne: Great Control Simplification: New American Types"Did you know that the British industry hasn't been making a "fuss or shouting?" Well, it hasn't. It's just been making quiet progress. For example, there's the experimental night mail air helicopter service in Norfolk that we've been hearing about for months if not years because it is going to excitingly start quite soon. And the Cierva Air Horse about which we've only been told how complicated and yet completely reliable and well engineered the motor and transmissions are in every issue of Flight since 1907. And there is the Gyrodyne, which wasn't in the last issue, but which is in this one. It's even allowed to fly, now. It's not quite as comfortable as the last one (that wasn't allowed to fly), but it is very controllable, stable and performs well. Flight really likes it. We're also told, again, about the Piasecki HJP-1 and the first Hiller 360 sale. Doman Helicopters, which has a different arrangement for mounting the rotors, is going to produce its  own helicopters. 

A short bit notes the first flight of the Avro Shackleton. 

Here and There

The Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto this summer will have some aircraft!  Australia reminds everyone out and about in the Southwest Pacific to keep an eye out for war wreckage, as 600 RAAF aircraft are still missing. Of 1500 crew reported lost, 22 turned up alive as POWs, and about 45% of the remainder have had their fate "definitely established." 

De Havilland reminds us that only de Havilland knows what the Comet can do. However, John Cunningham, the de Havilland chief test pilot, said in Sydney last Monday that the Comet will bon the London-Sydney run by 1952, and that at a cruising speed of 500mph at 35,000ft, will take two days. Convair reports that a B-36 recently spent 43h 37 minutes in the air, for 25 hours of which it carried a 10,000lb bomb load. It covered over 9000 miles, without flight-refuelling, and landed back in Fort Worth with two engines out of action.  Dr. Clyde Fenton, the Australian "flying doctor, was convicted of two violations of air navigation regulations in a Darwin court and fined £50. "No counsel could be found to represent him." I think that tells a story! Unless they are very, very short of lawyers in Darwin town. The USAF is going to stop using kerosene in jets, in favour of a "new fuel" that reduces crude oil requirements and has a lower octane rating than regular "automobile fuel." I'm not sure that I understand what this article is saying. It seems to be suggesting that the lower octane rating will make a jet fuel made of gasoline safer, but octane rating has nothing to do with the fire risk from gasoline! Kerosene is safer than gas because it is less volatile. 

"Supersonic Radio" Talk about misleading! The US Navy Ordnance Test Station has a mobile control trailer that houses the radio equipment that monitors supersonic missiles. It has a 30 channel receiver and some instruments, and replaces the idea of recovering the flight instruments from the missiles after they land, because this hasn't proved "satisfactory." 

Supermarine reminds about the Seagull, Ryan about the Navion, Williamson Manufacturing about its cameras, and Luscombe about its Silvaire. NACA has designed a wing with adjustable sweep-back that may go onto a Lockheed fighter. American air and ground crews will receive a Berlin Air Lift medal for 90 days of consecutive work since the operation began in June. 

Civil Aviation News

Most civil aviation news this week relates to new regulations, new routes, and the activities of the IATA and the civil aviation Clearing House. Way down at the bottom, we learn that the S.E. 2010 has flown, and that the new Constellation 749A has Curtiss 830 airscrews. Maximum takeoff limit has risen to 107,000lbs from 102,000, and as a result it will carry between 20 and 33% more payload on flights to North America, 19 to 64% to Latin America, and 27 to 40% to the Far East, while the increased maximum landing weight of 89,500lbs allows it to use the Speedpak for additional cargo capacity at a still-air range of up to 2200 miles with any passenger or cargo load factor. Also, some details of the "slope line" landing approach system to be installed at Idlewild have been released. Unlike the British system developed at Farnborough and installed at London, it has herring bone approach lines with individual lights sited and oriented so that they continue to indicate the proper heading from the beginning of the 1000yd glide path to the end. If oriented correctly, the lines will seem to converge at the beginning of the runway, while if a plane is too high or two low, the coherent lines will visually break up in such a way as to let the pilot know that the plane is too high or too low. 

Various services are new or better. New Zealand and Britain will go in for a third each of the new international airport on Fiji. 

"Dusting by Autocrat: New Auster Variant for Soil Fertilisation and Soil Control" It looks as though Auster will stop at nothing to promote the new Autocrat, even something as seedy as putting up an "article" in Flight. I guess the important question is the payload, so I'll mention that the windmill-powered pump (clever!) can dispense up to 400lbs of liquid fertiliser or insecticide. 

Also  wrote about fly-fishing. Words fail. 
"No. 3 Squadron and Its Antecedents" Number 3 squadron has a case for being the firsrt "heavier-than-air" unit, and so is upset that 1 and 2 Squadrons have had stories in Flight. Why, they fly from near Stonehenge! Isn't that antique? Also, Colonel Dunne, "author of An Experiment with Time," tried to build them a tailless aircraft. Now, six pages and forty years later, they fly Vampires, which are still not tailless. Who's Who tells me that Colonel Dunne married a woman named  the Hon. Cicely Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes at the age of 52, had two children, and thereafter confined his professional endeavours to writing childrens' stories. I was going to make fun of the name, but the thought somehow sucks the life out of me.

"Bomber Command Reunion" Seven thousand veterans assembled at the Royal Albert Hall to have a jolly good time and listen to a message from Lord Trenchard. There was supposed to be community singing, but Anne Shelton, Anne Ziegler and Webster Booth were on their own, although "Two-Ton" Tessie O'Shea got a good reception, and Air Marshal Harris sent a telegram from South Africa.

"Civil Aviation Costs: Some Sombre Revelations from the Civil Appropriation Accounts" The deficit of the three airlines was well over the statutory limit of £10 million at the beginning of the year, and has mounted since. The flying boat services have been particular offenders, and the Auditor wants BOAC to look into them. The Auditor is also concerned about some bad leasing and aircraft purchases. BEA took a bath on some Vikings and Ju52s, while BOAC got egg-on-face over some Lancastrians that makes a later purchase of some Yorks seem reasonable.

Shorter news at the bottom of some fine coverage of the RAF boxing championship notices that the RAF was getting more entrants, but still not enough. Air Chief Marshal Slessor blames low pay, but also "the disproportionate amount of publicity given to crashes." Sir Frederick Handley Page and General Gale talked at the same event. Also, Sir Lindsay Everard has died.

B. Cornthwaite (which is a real name), "More About Static: An Accident Investigator's Views on Electrical Discharges" Although not a serious problem, static discharges are alarming, and Cornthwaite believes that altitude and speed are contributing factors, which means that they will become more significant in the future, which is a good reason for investigating the contributing factors now, especially since some are related to the shape of aircraft, which can hardly be fixed by minor modifications later!

"The Anglo-American Conference" The agenda of the upcoming Anglo-American Aeronautical Conference in New York is published.

"Air Safety Debated: Some Contrasting Opinions on the R.Ae.S. Quartet of Lectures" Flight returns to the R.Ae.S. Discussion covered last week to hear the comments. Commentators were unimpressed by John North's attempts to give an abstract analysis. Several thought that the empirical approach based on statistics with which North began, was worth following up on, but that his jump into a "checkers" analogy with decision making was unsound. The Chief Inspector of Accidents liked Dr. Bergin's paper on the psychological and physiological factors, and emphasised fatigue and fear in particular. He hoped that more doctors would research the field and offer advice. Several designers had questions for Bergin about cockpit layout. In reply, he had some interesting things to say about lighting in particular. Roxbee Cox was also interested in hearing, and asked for properly designed helmets.


Lewis Cooper asks why surplus Tiger Moths couldn't be distributed to clubs to improve airmindedness and such. Flight follows up on my sarcasm by quoting a letter of 3 March reporting that the Navy had refused to subsidise Tiger Moth distribution on the grounds that they were "of no training value for Naval Aviation." E. Fennessey writes to say that he proposed an automatic distress call "tell tale" last year, and the Ministry of Civil Aviation showed "only slight interest." C. M. A. Johnson, G. Collinson, and "Air Gunner" have old-fashioned concerns about birds flying and the history of pioneer RAF squadrons.

Engineering, 18 March 1949

R. Graham, K, R. Williams and R. W. Wilson, "The Effect of Heat on Electrodeposited Chromium" Depositing a surface treatment of chromium on steel adds considerably to its hardness, but these layers are very hard to lubricate. Therefore, various ways for depositing the chromium have been developed. (I am imagining herring bone checked grooves that channel the oil along, but no doubt am completely wrong.) Some of these depositing methods are electrical, so the authors are off to find out what happens when these films are heated. It is clearly an important and meaty topic that the auto industry is waiting to hear about, which is why this article has a second part published in the next issue of 25 March. The method is mostly x-raying.


K. J. Habell's Engineering Optics: The Principles of Optical Methods in Engineering Measurement is long overdue and an important book considering all the optical measuring that is going on these days, but the reviewer must have a book of his own coming along, because as soon as he is done praising Habell, he proceeds to bury him with some arcane complaints. The Carnegie Institute has published the Institute's Department of Terrestrial Magnetism's Annual Report on Terrestrial Magnetism, 1947--8. Before the war, the Survey was working hard on a map of terrestrial magnetism that would show all the local fluctuations and distortions, but the war interrupted that and sent the Survey's workers to the minefields to deal with magnetic mines. Now, it has resumed its work and published 6 of a projected 17 volumes covering work already done. Unfortunately, the war has expanded science's ideas of what such a map should look like, so completion looks as far away as ever. The Department of Scientific and Industrial Research has published Building Research, 1940--5, which is a potpourri of work done by the Building Research Board unto subjects ranging from bridges to insulation values.

"The Engineering Outlook, XI: Light Electrical Engineering and The Electrical Wire and Cable Industries" This is an odd combination, given that the light industry does all sorts of highly-manufactured, complicated bits, while the wiring industry is mainly dependent on the price of copper, and even the cable industry, in spite of all sorts of new high voltage and waterproof and coaxial cables, is looking more like a commodity industry all the time.

The story is, as usual, one of rapid expansion. The industry is particularly excited about getting into American television, but GEC and Austin Waters are success with flourescent light tubes, the former making 20,000 5ft tubes a week Storage battery and glass tube production is up, and Joseph Lucas is working its plants in some cases up to 100% harder than prewar to meet the needs of auto exports and foreign spare parts depots. Refrigeration machinery is also selling well, as are the already-mentioned wire and cable.

R. J. van Lessen, "Electric and Diesel-Electric Traction in the Netherlands Railways" Beginning in 1908, the Netherlands railway system has increasingly moved to  electric traction. Diesel-electric still provides high speed service on some lines, but the Netherlands finds that with its high density of usage, electrical traction is more competitive. Also, it uses native coal rather than imported oil. The Railway uses 1600v overhead lines, having passed up the opportunity to refurbish with 3000v equipment after the war because what they have works fine. Rather than get into the generation business, the Railway buys power from local authorities.

"Testing Tunnels for Aircraft Propellers" De Havilland built a wind tunnel specifically for airscrews during the war. It is very fancy, but just another wind tunnel in the end.

Launches and Trials is a very short list this week, with SS Sheydke and Amakura, both single-screw mixed passenger and cargo vessels, the former refrigerated, and  MS Warla, same. British Standards Association lays down the law on gear hobbing machinery and agricultural tractor accessories, making this a David Brown number.

Regional Notes strikes several notes. Scottish steel is coming out at record quantities to consistent heavy demand, but only thanks to scrap deliveries making up for pig iron shortages. Coal production is discouraging in the third week of March, but recovers in the fourth. South Yorkshire is doing better on steel, thanks to more gas. Incidentally, one of the main customers for local steel is the collieries, which are refurbishing to get at more deep-dug coal. The Southwest is agonising over the closing of 300 pits and their consolidation into 60 larger works, which will lead to some unemployment of the "non able-bodied," although there will be more work for the able. Don't ask me, I don't know what the "non-able-bodied" do, either. At least there is consistent heavy home demand. Cleveland and the Northern Counties are desperately short of pig iron from their accustomed east coast  hematite supplies to meet orders that extend two years out.


"Marine Reduction Gearing" I would love it if Engineering were to sit down and lead me t hrough the mysteries of helical gears and double reduction, but this is a summary of a paper given to the Institution of Marine Engineering by A. W. Davies on "Trends in the Development of Marine Gearing," so we are in the author's hand, and clarity is not what he is after. He is after precision, which is hard. Did you know that the temperature in gear-hobbing work rooms needs to be controlled to within 1 degree? That precision is still being held back by the lack of proper measuring equipment in same? That there are a whole host of problems associated with making really good gears, especially for reverse gear, and that the industry's reliance on lapping (which uses an abrasive paste) has proven to be a disaster, because it doesn't all get cleaned out? I don't know how much of a disaster, really, since you'd think we would have heard, but Davies prefers shaving, subject to the limited supply of measuring equipment. Davies thinks that certain recent developments that might have something to do with locked trains (again don't ask me!) are overrated. It's all quite interesting in an I-have-no-idea-what-they're-talking-about way.

"Atmospheric Pollution" The British Electricity Authority is hearing a complaint that the Fulham power station is emitting too many particles, even by current standards, which must be a lot. Other plants are in trouble for sulphur oxides and flouride emissions.

Notes covers "The Economic Survey for 1949," which I think Time did a better job of covering, so I am leaving that to Time. The agenda of the Anglo-American Conference on Aeronautics is out, patent law amendments are on the agenda in Parliament, an interesting paper on the effects of overloads on transformers is going to be heard next week, and the Imperial College of Science and Technology heard a symposium on hydrodynamics.

Letters has one, by Per Draminsky, defending his research into dynamical crankshaft damping, which Engineering continues to believe was something else, since the crankshafts weren't under load at the time.

Obituaries records the death of John Rennie, a great grandson of the great old bridge engineer, at the age of 72; of Mr. R. A. Ryves, a civil engineer, at the age of 76, who was mainly interested in irrigation, although he wrote histories of the Channel Tunnel Project and articles for Kempe's Engineer's Year Book.

Sensing that I might need some extra time to myself tonight, Engineering next offers a two-part (at least) account of the life and works of Rudolf Diesel by his grandson, Eugen.

"Investigations of the Fischer-Tropsch Process" The F-T is a method of drawing coal gas through a "fluidised" catalyst bed while subjecting it to as much heat and pressure as is needed dto turn it into 40--60% low grade gas, 30% Diesel, and 10--30% wax, which is good for feedstocks for the chemical industry, but terrible as the basis for a petroleum industry, if you can import petrtoleum, which the Germans couldn't, which is why they built many F-T plants, and why the British are now looking at them mainly to see what they can do with fluidised catalysts in processes that actually make sense, such as producing high-octane gasoline from petroleum feedstocks.

"The Cooling of High-Power Radio Valves" Mr. J. Bell gave a paper on same to the Institution of Electrical Engineers, which stimulated vigorous discussion. Water cooling is better if the tubes are good, but you need to do something about the crust that forms on them if the water isn't properly filtered, and the corrosion that happens even if it is.

Two-articles on new products, a "Gauge for the Internal Diameters of Cylinders," The "Megger" Earthometer Tester, and "Fuels for Underfeed Stokers," which are a kind of automatic stoking machine that takes its feed . . .under? Follow, anyway.

"Improved Manufacturing Methods at the Crewe Locomotive Works" The Crewe works, formerly of LMS, now of British Rail, have seen many improvements since before the war. I was particularly interested in the new steel furnaces. It isn't just the iron and steel industry that needs new and more thermally efficient furnaces! 

Labour Notes notes wage settlements, mostly quite conservative, no movement in the index of prices, the reduction in hours from 48 to 45 hours of 10,000 workers mainly in the flax-processing and rubber reclamation industries and a slight rise in work stoppages.

"Fuel Injection Pump with Hydraulic Governor" A very long catalogue/article celebrating the new fuel injector for stationary diesels developed by CAV Limited, of Acton, London.

"The Development of Magnetic-Tape Recorders" Since we are interested in this, it could be quite the paper, but it is not. B. E. G. Mittel's informal lecture to a youth section of the Institution of Electrical Engineers covered all sorts of preliminaries from way back in the Nineteenth Century before skipping past the last twenty years in a rush to end with the observation that bias frequencies improve recording quality and no-one knows why, so it's all a big shoulder shrug. Not very helpful.

Time, 21 March 1949


Time did a bit about the Catholic Church and (I guess) Communism the other week, so predictably this week's letters are full of madly impassioned American clergymen protesting that if America once makes nice with the Catholics in the interest of stopping communism, it will be a totalitarian theocracy ruled by the Vatican  the day after.  Geoffrey Crowther writes to say that he invented the word "disinflation" to describe "deflation," only nicer. I think he thinks that Time thinks that deflation is deflation, and that depressions are depressions. Whereas, in fact, disinflation, like bleeding, floggings, cold showers and a bullet in the back of (someone else's) head, are good for what ails you. Lewis Sheldon and Francis Krupansky write, reasonably enough, to point out that the Nuremberg Trial judges had very good reason for convicting Nazi generals of being Nazis. That is, they waged aggressive war and exterminating nations. On the other hand, Grace Wilson Stewart, of, discouragingly, Fort Winfield Scott of California, writes with the usual blither about one country's atrocities, etc, who are we to judge? The only people who can judge, Mrs. Grace Wilson Stewart! Because someone has to do it!  The Publisher's Letter is devoted to talking up Time's new, international, "Atlantic" edition.

National Affairs

The lead article is whining about the income tax, illustrated with a picture of Senator Vandenberg at his most waspish, with a tiny little nugget of fact that tells me where Time is coming from, down at the bottom. Persons earning more than $10,000/year make up 1.79% of taxpayers but pay 42.14% of the income tax. It's not fair, whine the people who earn more than $10,000/year, as the light another cigar with a twenty-dollar bill.

I haven't been able to track Jenny Dalpiaz down, unless
she was visiting from Ohio, in which case she lived until
"Weapon of the Minority" Time covers the Southern senators' filibuster, which is aimed at preventing the President from introducing a civil rights bill, and which is being abetted by Republican senators who are happy that it is also holding up a minimum wage increase and rent control. Time explains the history of the filibuster, its justification, and points out that the South hopes that it can avoid cloture until the Administration swears off civil rights by passing a motion requiring a two-thirds vote of the entire Senate. This is why the GOP's share of the Coloured vote keeps falling!

Time needs to review its clippings from 1930. The destruction
of Sherman, Texas was closer to an insurrection than an
accident and the courthouse was fired deliberately. Gillars
spent twelve years in jail, and lived the rest of her life in the
Lady of Bethlehem Convent in Columbus, Ohio, where she
taught German, French and music.  And speaking of light hands
for right wing maniacs, sweet old Clendenin Ryan published
The American Mercury in its fever-right '50s heyday.
"Texas Minds Its Own Business" Back in 1930, a mob in Sherman, Texas, lynched a boy for rape, and then, its dander up, set fire to the Negro business district; which fire spread through the White business district and even set fire to the courthouse. This led Texas to think about an anti-lynching bill, and it is now thinking about one again (five years to death for lynchers, just like treason, for which Mildred "Axis Sally" Gillars was convicted this week), because it might pre-empt the President's bill and also keep the courthouse from burning down. Qlso in a riot were the people of Gary, Indiana, upset at seven murders since January and ready to invade city council chambers to demand that something be done about it.

Down underneath all the crime stories is a bit about how Clendenin John Ryan[!], the GOP candidate for mayor of New York, was done wrong by the Democratic machine, which (according to Time), tarred him by association with a private detective named Kenneth Ryan, who had phone tapping equipment at home. Somehow, loosely, Time gets around to mentioning that a third person, John Broady, had worked for Clendenin, phonetapping his wife, the previously unmentioned Countess Marie Anne Wurmbrand-Stuppach, and it was all too low to credit.

Americana reports that Alaska is considering a $50 poll tax on unmarried women to relieve the housing shortage, and that Federal Barge Lines diesel towboat Harry Truman failed to beat the 79 year-old record for the New Orleans--St. Louis voyage set by the steamboat Robert E. Lee.


Two stories from the anticommunism front: First, Time covers more moves in Moscow, as Nikolai Voznesensky is removed from the Politburo, while the eight Atlantic Pact nations sent envoys to a meeting that seems, unbelievably, to have produced a concrete result, although the world is still waiting on America to  join the Pact and form the fully united common front that will keep Uncle Joe in check.

"Austerity versus Beneluxury" Common defence might be settled, but Sir Stafford Cripps was in Brussels to lecture everyone on the need for austerity to get Europe's house in order, etc., etc. Even Averill Harriman found this a bit much, especially when it is Britain's attempts to buy entirely within the sterling area that is undermining European recovery.

"Read and Reflect" Time covers the trial of fifteen Protestant missionaries charged in Bulgaria with being American black marketing, espionage, and being annoying do-gooder American nosy parkers. Time deems this to be very backwards and ungrateful considering that previous generations of Protestant missionaries did their best to stir up anti-Turkish sentiment for the Bulgarians, and where's the gratitude? And --I'm sorry. Why are there Christian missionaries in Bulgaria, again? Haven't they been Christianised enough, already?

Apart from the fact that Edwina also inherited £800,000 outside
the trust, she inherited a portfolio of real estate including
Broadlands House in Hampshire. But, sure, let's keep focussing
on her being broke since she has an after-tax income of £5000.
This week's cover story is another one that I don't need to cover. It's more consequential, being about Aneurin Bevan and Britain's new National Health Service scheme, but it's just about the opposite of something we can invest in, so it is about as important as the next story, which is about how Lady Mountbatten is broke, on account of taxes taking £65,000 of the £70,000 she receives annually from her father's £1,406,250,000 trust, which she must have Parliament's permission to break to pay last year's capital contribution.

"No Ghoti Today" Dr. Mont Follick, inventor of the rotary toothbrush, which is silly, is a Labour MP, which is silly, and argued for Basic English spelling reform in Parliament, which is also silly. To illustrate this, Time points out that Dr. Follick has lived in Wales and New Zealand; one of them has placenames with many consonants, while the other has placenames with many vowels. In conclusion, getting rid of "C," "Q," and "X" is silly.

Communists are silly because Danish communists made fun of a fancy ball at the American ambassador's residence, even though the Soviet ambassador and his wife attended. (Also, there is a nice dance hall in Moscow, which you can't have if you are a real Proletarian.) Also, a Japanese Kabuki play producer cast some women in his plays, which is against ancient taboo, and then became a Communist, because he is a leftist. Time isn't sure what to think about this, because Japanese communists might be hopelessly picturesque and silly, since they are Japanese, who are hopelessly picturesque and silly when they are not fighting world wars. And speaking of Asian foibles, the Koumintang took time out from collapsing under Communist pressure to celebrate Premier Sun Po's resignation, which is a good sign, because now there is only one Koumintang premier, and he is down in Canton, which the Communists will take many more weeks to reach after the flood falls and they cross the Yang-tse in the summer. Also, the tribal hillfolk of Assam had a convention where they heard their leader, Jaipal Singh, promise a new tribal state, Jarkhand, to be carved out of east central India.

Away down in Latin America, Cubans are upset at Americans again, and something might be going on in Argentina. (That is, something is always going on in Argentina, but this time it might result in something else happening. Perhaps more strikebreaking or Eva being "retired"?) Also, American experts helpfully suggest that Brazil would develop faster if it rolled out the red carpet for American business more. In exciting Canadian news, there's a strike on in a textiles town in Quebec.


"The Last to Go" The President's recent statement about how price controls are needed because of inflation seems silly now that the price of lead is going down, because everything else already is. Bill Odom's round the world speed record is business news because he flew a Beechcraft and works for Beechcraft. Actually, I think it's more likely to be business news because Beechcraft is pulling strings.

"Good Gravy" Although you wouldn't know it unless you read obscure books like Grapes of Wrath, there is a cotton harvest in California. It is quite big, but it is a bit of a "gravy train" because the growers are making money off the government bounty that is probably going to go, soon. Also, someone built a hotel in Houston, Texas, and he is part-Irish, so that is news.

New Products reports that Ben and Joe's Benay-Albee Novelty Company is bringing out an exciting variety of novelty "science" hats including one that doubles as a ballpoint pen, the Atomic Whirler, with a pinwheel on top, and a new version of the Whirler that upgrades to a propeller. I guess this is the spring for science-hats (as opposed to auxiliary air force hats), becaue Brooklyn's American Merrilei Corporation has moved on from Hawaiian leis and paper party hats to a pith hat with a tiny radio. If you prefer a football type helmet, American Junior Aircraft has one with a sound tone transmitter that guides a glider airplane via sonic vibrations.

State of Business reports that a Texas Congressman is demanding that stock market margin requirements come down so that people can speculate with less money, and that the Santa Fe had a good year.

The Hoover report is controversial, National Airlines has filed a plan with the CAB to sell off its routes and essentially put itself to sleep, and financial analysts seem to agree that this will be a down year for the stock market.

Science, Medicine, Education

"Britain Can Make It" That story about Britain making plutonium, again. "Soon, Britain will have plenty, probably enough for bomb production." Shhh! Someone, somewhere, hasn't made that connection yet! Britain has two plutonium-producing reactors under construction, at Sellafield in Cumberland, which is not remote, because nowhere in Britain is remote, unlike Hanford, Washington, or Siberia, where "the Russians are presumably building."

"Whistle of the Missile" The Army's Ballistic Research Laboratory at the Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland has come up with a doppler detector to keep track of the missiles being fired off at White Sands. "Dr. Dorritt Hoffleit, 41, a dark-haired spinster astronomer at the Harvard College," "helped to develop" it. (The last quotes are because I suspect that if she were a man, it would read, "invented.") It's a radio detector that uses the doppler shift in radio signals transmitted versus received to measure the speed of the missile, and, when four ground stations are compared, location. Army Ordnance hopes that it will get accuracy within 6ft. Dr. Hoffleit is a 1935 Radcliffe graduate who started out doing spectroscopic studies of stars.

"A Private Matter" King George VI had a lumbar sympathectomy this week. So the King of England is being opened up to have a chunk of major sympathetic nerve ganglia removed, since they know that this is likely to improve the circulation in his legs, and probably not much else, since it's just the body's nervous system, and how complicated can it be? When asked if it was covered by NHS, the answer was . . . There's also a new pregnancy test involving the Latin American leopard frog, which is speedier than the rabbit test, and useful in "doubtful cases, where a miscarriage is anticipated." I think that might be doubletalk for something.

"Quick VD Cure" It turns out that penicillin make cure syphilis with a single dose! Also, Dr. Alvarez of the Mayo Clinic reminds doctors that patients who complain of tiredness may be psychotic, and not ill. That's a relief! Also, a doctor looking at the old records says that President Jackson was so mean because he had a case of the everythings. (Bronchiectasis, intestinal inflammation, dropsy, osteomyelitis, amyloidosis; as well as bronchitis, malarial fever and lung abscesses, previously diagnosed.)

"The Case at Brown" The "case at Brown" is that pledge week turned into a non-stop series of street battles between rival fraternities that led to one death, suspension of all fraternity events, and talk of banning them from campus. One thing the Junior College doesn't have . . . General Eisenhower is splitting time and duties between being President of Columbia and being effective Secretary of Defence. As long as he doesn't try to haze a B-36! Time takes time to name all of the General's staff, which even includes Paul Davis, formerly of Stanford, vice president of development at both places. Also, Dwight Taylor of Nantucket(!) is the winner of the Westinghouse Science Talent Search this year, and Smith's new president is another man, Benjamin Fletcher Wright. I can't help mentioning him because he is so manly that he's picture with a pipe, which is so 1945, and had to shelve a book on The Federalist Papers to do university presidenting.  If you're going to be a man in the humanities, best study something manly like the Founders or the Age of Jackson!

"Is Your Set Obsolete?" For the last two weeks, Commander Eugene F. McDonald, president of Zenith Radio, has been carrying on an ad campaign warning that all TV sets except Zeniths are obsolete because the FCC is set to license UHF television stations and only the Zenith has a built in "turret tuner" allowing it to bring in UHF with minimal modification. Ross Siragusa of Admiral is disgusted because no-one is sure that the FCC will do any such thing, and who knows how a turret tuner works, anyway?

Radio and Television, Press, Art, People

"Mister Big Cannon" The Koumintang arrested Kung Teh-pai, editor of the National Salvation Daily the other day for denouncing Chiang Kai-shek, so this is a good time to review Kung's career. Also, various stories about magazines (Script) failing and community newspapers cutting staff are set against an excellent year for the Alexandria Gazette, President Washington's favourite newspaper, and very Virginian. (Unionists burned it down during the Civil War.)

"The $35,250 Answer" an elderly Negro couple from Philadelphia, Benjamin and Julia Hubert, won the Stop the Music contest and won a $1000 savings bond and a long list of sponsored prizes, including a 1949 Kaiser sedan. Once they've sold off assorted prizes like a $1000 spinet, two Harley Davidson motorcycles and a pair of pedigreed Great Dane puppies, they'll have some money, although no idea how much, especially since they haven't decided on what to do about the trip to Monte Carlo, one year scholarship to Berkshire Hills, diamond ring, ermine jacket, kitchen makeover . . . sheesh.

Joyce Clyde King Hall sponsored an art contest in France last Christmas. It has stirred up one of those incomprehensible French rows in which French talk about obscure things to each other and which no American could possibly understand. Why not let Picasso and Matisse compete for Hallmark's money? Time must be in a mood, because it closes out the section with two artists who are alive. Two! Gerhard Marcks and Andre Masson. Perhaps it is because they are both Europeans.

George Bernard Shaw explains that he isn't voting Communist even though he is a Communist because he is a Communist and the Communists aren't. Evelyn Waugh's favourite American writer is Erle Stanley Gardner, which I think is some kind of clever British insult we colonials just don't get. Mary Pickford and the Gish sisters had lunch together in Manhattan, and were photographed looking like ladies who lunch. Vivian Leigh is out at the Old Vic for two weeks due to a strained back. Ray Bolger has a broken nose, Lady Mendl has been sent to bed rest, Robert Maynard Hutchins was in the campus musical review making fun of college football, Glenn Davis is engaged to Elizabeth Taylor, who is 17!!!

Diana Wagner Anderson, daughter of Joan Bennett, has had a daughter, Amanda. William Draper has remarried, to Eunice Barzynski, 33, a former WAC Captain assigned to Moscow and daughter of a Brigadier General. Crosby Gaige and General Giraud have died.

The New Movies

Time is skeptical about the new "problem" movies tackling the Negro Question, such as Intruder in the Dust, No Way Out, Lost Boundaries, Pinky and Home of the Brave. 

Devil in the Flesh inspired one of those French rows that we hear so much about, and now it can be seen in America. It is about two young people who have an affair, and then the girl dies in childbirth, and the boy learns to be a man. And who says that women can't get jobs these days? They have the best jobs of all! Making babies and then helping men achieve character development by dying! South of St. Louis has cowboys and horses, Alexis Smith and Joel McCrea. No Minor Vices is "painfully misconceived," because it is silly instead of funny. March of Time's latest documentary is the best documentary on the new Asia since the new Asia started the other year.


T. S. Elliott has some cultural writing out. Notes Towards a Definition of Culture is about how everything is going to heck, I think. I probably have to read this book, and if I don't, I'm going to fake my way through with The Atlantic's review, not Time's! F. L. Green's Mist on the Waters is about a murder, but aimed just a little higher than the average thriller. Time liked it. It also liked Elizabeth Taylor's Wreath of Roses with three female friends and the charming psychopath who comes between them.

Flight, 24 March 1949


"Air Defence" The Secretary of State for Air said that orders had now been placed for a twin-jet night fighter and a twin-jet interim bomber, and that Fighter Command's jet fighter strength would be doubled. It seems that this means that the squadrons will be raised back to two-flight strength, rather than that the number of squadrons would be doubled. Flight is upset that the "interim" jet bomber is so far away, never mind the "dream bomber" to follow. Flight expects more Lincolns to come out of storage, but admits that, in the event of war, Britain will mainly be a "carrier" for American bombers. Something that it seems fine with. I don't get that, because it is so unlike Flight's petulance over the "delay" in delivering the first jet night fighter, which ought to have been on the drawing board since 1945.

(The irony is that the Meteor NF-11 is far more interim than the Canberra. The Javelin will be along in 1956, when the Canberra's career was hardly even getting started.)

"Manning the RAF" Eighty thousand men will separate from the RAF this year, and there will be a surplus of skilled aircraft fitters and a shortage in the radio trades. It is hoped that this will be fixed by next year, and that the recent airing of grievances will help. 

"E Pluribus Unum" Flight thinks that in the next few months, either the Russians will decide to use "ideological infiltration to achieve their aims," or else strike militarily before the Atlantic Pact has been firmed up. It expects the former, but warns that if the Russians go for the latter, they will engineer some kind of incident, such as shooting at the Air Lift. 

"Jewish Spitfires" Flight thinks that the recent "impudence by the Palestine pilots" was cowardly and criminal. 

"Viscount '700': Lengthened Fuselage, Greater Span and Latest Rolls-Royce Darts Permit Increased Payload" While quiet and comfortable, the Vickers Viscount looked to have been nipped out of the race by the Airspeed Ambassador and Armstrong Whitworth Apollo by its small size. Flight has now learned about this newer model, with a span of 94ft vice 89, 6ft 8" greater fuselage length, wider track and wheelbase, increased all up weight from 45,000 to 48,000lbs, lower wing loading, increased fuel capacity of 1400 vice 1200 gallons, but slightly lower speed and service ceiling and longer takeoff run. The large oval windows have been retained, and the plane remains quiet and vibration free. It is about to start pressurisation and icing tests. 

L. H. W. Harris, "Short-range Airline Speed: Pistons versus jets: The High Cost of Saving a Few Minutes" Harris uses math and Whittle's analysis to show that the Ambassador is far more economical than a jet airliner, especially the C-102. 

In shorter news, the David Brown group has had its own fleet of aircraft for a year now, and once that hurdle was jumped, it only made sense for them to have their own airfield on some disused moorland a mile from their Huddersfield headquarters. And once that hurdle was crossed, it only made sense to add emergency night-landing facilities, and now it is available to other users, such as a Belfast-Huddersfield "textile charter."
Rustic! By Ian M, CC BY-SA 2.0,
Here and There

Holland is buying some more Fireflies. Rolls Royce is buying a share of Australia's Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation, which is now producing Merlins and Nenes under license. Australia's Woomera test range may host American test rockets with atomic warheads as well as British tests, as their New Mexico range has run out of room. France's Fouga R. 13, a single-seat acrobatic jet trainer, will be shown at the Paris Show. There is more talk of an American atomic aircraft. The AEC project is called the "Nepa," for Nuclear energy propulsion for aircraft. We need to be told again that the Neptune launch from Coral Sea last year was the heaviest deck takeoff ever, and that the Neptune set a world distance record at only 11,000lbs more load at takeoff. The USAF recently assured the American joint chiefs of staff that the B-36 can bomb from 42,000ft. The USN hopes to recapture the world speed record with the new XF7U-1 reaching 700mph. The Koumintang  has ended everyone's embarrassment by sinking the ex-HMS Aurora. Aqualight is going to produce a competitor to the Tribian. Wily Messerschmitt is making prefab houses now.

Liverpool-Wavertree, but Ronnie isn't wrong, even if she
is being facetiousness.
"The Third RAF: House of Commons Debates Air Estimates; Jet Fighters and Bombers" Arthur Henderson's statement about the Air Estimates is about the "third" RAF. Because the third version of the RAF will have better fighters and an interim medium jet bomber soon, and a radical new heavy (or possibly medium) jet bomber later. Also, there will be a jet night fighter, just in time for jet bombers, and not too late, at all. Also, there will be the Shackleton, and the Vickers Valetta transport, which is the closest thing to news about new planes in the Statement. Manpower-wise, there will be 128,000 RAF regulars and 102,000 National Servicemen in 1949/50, which is far more than is needed, because of imbalances in the skilled trades and general inexperience. Harold Macmillan said that he thought that all of the secrecy was overdone and the government shouldn't have sold those engines to the Soviets that time. He is also up for buying some B-29s. Quentin Hogg called for more hats (an immediate expansion of the R. Aux. AF). Ironically, he admits that he was against hats back when he was the Under-Secretary, but now that he is on the opposition benches, he has been converted to the usefulness and wisdom of giving money to flying clubs and the auxiliary air force. One wild-eyed fellow (a "Mr. Raikes," MP for Bedlam-East Gotham), even suggested that RAF pay raises keep up with main street.

"Marking the Peacetime Target: Lord Trenchard and Lord Tedder Call Upon the Pathfinders for a New Leadership" The Pathfinders Association had a reunion and invited Trenchard and Tedder to speak, as Harris is in exile in South Africa and Bennett had just flown a Berlin sortie in the morning, and was in no state for anything more than some "pithy after-dinner remarks."

"Latest American Helicopter: Piasecki XHJP-1 Claimed to be World's Faster and to Have Made First Helicopter Loop" The top speed doesn't qualify as a record as it wasn't run both ways, but it was still 131mph, which is very impressive for such a large helicopter on only 525hp. The rigid structure brought "vibration to a new low for this type of aircraft," although Flight says that "there was room for improvement in that particular direction."

Civil Aviation News

Sir Harold Hartley, chairman of BOAC, says that the amalgamation of BOAC and BSAA wasn't a question of BOAC conquering BSAA and grinding it beneath BOAC's boots, but rather an association of equals to gain the best of both, etc, etc. Then he went and sacrificed the board of BSAA as burnt offerings to Capitoline Jupiter. There has been an air accident in New Zealand with fifteen deaths. BEA will run a £1.5 million deficit this year and next, and that some of its internal routes cannot be expected to pay their way. Douglas' "Super DC-3" will have a 400lb increased all up weight and a cruising speed of 234mph. The split flap will be extended, and the ailerons will get geared tabs, while the horizontal and vertical tail surface areas will be increased and strengthened for  greater design loads. The wheels will be better faired, the main undercarriage getting doors, while the tailwheel will be partially retracting. The Berlin Airlift is achieving new records, and doing so with fewer planes. The first Stratocruisers will be in service on BOAC's Atlantic routes next January, while the DH Comet will begin to arrive at the end of 1951. Armstrong Whitworth is showing off the cockpit of the Apollo.
American will retire its last DC-3s on 1 April, after which it will have a fleet of 50 DC-6s and 75 Convairs. AOA, which is operating Constellations overseas and Skymasters in Europe, will replace its Skymasters with Stratocruisers "gradually."

David Gunston, "They Stoop to Conquer: Falcons for Airfield Defence Against Dangerous Bird Flocks" This is neat! The RAF is going to extend its experiment with using falcons to keep airfields free of dangerous bird flocks. Most of the article is spent explaining why bird strikes are bad, which is a bit silly, but I am going to give Flight some room on this one, as otherwise they couldn't pay Gunston by the word for this super article with lots of cute pictures of falcons.

A. J. M. Smyth, "Retrieving Glider Cables: How No. 12 Group Gliding Club Saves Ground-time" This is also pretty neat. I don't usually take much time with gliding articles, but the trick here is an electric winding engine on a tow cart, and it looks very clever, and possibly even "engineering industry" related. I'm still not wasting any time on the next article, about flying clubs that save money by sharing planes, or the one after that, about Turkish flying clubs.  Fezzes!

Shorter bits at the bottom cover Mr. A. W. Cleaver's paper before the British Interplanetary Society, "Progress in Astronautics since the War," which covers recent American developments and predicts that the future belongs to atomic rockets, and corrects the article on Electro-Hydraulics from last week that might be taken to have implied that Electro-Hydraulics made the undercarriages they were "assembling." They do not. They make the retracting mechanisms and do the assembling. The telescopic legs and shock absorbers come from Lockheed.

"Specialised Capacity: Precision and Craftsmanship at a Famous Coventry Works" Cornercrofts is making the assembly jigs that are going to Switzerland so that the Swiss can make their own Vampires. I feel as though this long and fawning story is some kind of reward for earning those precious, precious francs. Or maybe persuading the Swiss that it is hard, and that they should continue buying British rather than trying to do it themselves? Either way, francs.

"Tudor VIII Eight Miles Up: Modified Pressurisation System for new High Altitude Research" The purpose of the Tudor VIII "is, of course, high altitude research." I didn't know that, so don't "of coue" me! The service Tudor's pressurisation system is good to 25,000ft, giving a positive pressure of 5 1/2lbs per square inch, which is the equivalent of over 5 tons on a standard door. The new system is designed to give +8, enough for 8000ft equivalent pressure at 44,000ft. It is by Avro and Normalair, and the article doesn't explain why all that pressure is needed at 44,000ft, which is awfully high even for the jet airliners of TOMORROW. So I guess it is for those futuristic 100,000 "medium bombers" for dropping 10,000lb bombs of some kind on a place that is as far away as Moscow.

"Airscrew Design For Transport Aircraft: Some Basic Principles Reviewed" Precis of a Paper Given to the R. Ae. S. by G. C. I. Gardiner and J. Mullin" This is a review, so it is just a discussion of the issues: Section, number of blades, type of blades (hollow steel, hollow duralumin, wood, impregnated wood/plastic).


Ex. F/S Hooper and ex-Squadron Leader Green have opinions about the recent Bomber Command reunion. Christopher Blackburn thinks that only the Short Solent could restore "British prestige" in South America. That is, of the newly, equally-amalgamated BOAC doesn't fly Short Solents, all the Latin Americans will lose all respect for Britain and Britons and will go around sneering at them for not being manly enough to build their own airliners. H. S. thinks that there should be an aeronautical museum. Granville Bradshaw thinks that the RAF jet bomber programme is already out of date and instead there should be "pilotless atom carriers," like V-1s, only bigger. H. G. Tanner reminds everyone that while the RNVR might be very short of hats, the RAFVR has lots of hats for everyone who wants to join and buzz around in a Chipmunk getting ready for WWIII. F. R. Banks clarifies that he means that an existing engine design firm could built the first prototype aeroengine for £58,000, not develop it through to production. Which, letter-writer F. K. Goulding points out, would cost more than ten times that.

Engineering, 25 March 1949


The Institute of Fuel's "symposium" on Waste-Heat Recovery from Industrial Furnaces is not really a symposium, Engineering complains, since there is no discussion. But the papers are useful.

"The Engineering Outlook, XII: General and Constructional Engineering" Otherwise known as everyone else! There is far too much here to summarise, but this is the place to come to a final reckoning, and it is impressive. The engineering industry is producing 40% more than in 1948, is exporting 40% of its product, and will need the utmost in skill and energy to maintain its place in the world, given that it has to export all of its capital goods.

W. F. Rowden, of Mond Nickel, has died.

Catalogue-style articles on rubber linings for chemical plants and a bore measuring micrometer follow. Then the second part of the article about aiirscrew-testing wind tunnels, which focusses on the aerodynamical balance.

British Standards announces a rescript ordaining nomenclature of metallic finishings and electrical installations, as see below.


"Electrical Accidents"  HM Electrical Inspector of Factories has a frighteningly hilarious review of things people did to bring enormous electrical discharges down on them, as well as tragic accounts of failures that leads him to recommend that design should always be "fail to safety."

"The Economic Survey" Engineering thinks that it is far too optimistic.

Notes The Royal Society is having elections. The Einstein celebration is being planned. The Institution of Mechanical Engineers is having a symposium on marine diesel engines.  The Royal Engineers heard a talk from Major General Sir Hugh Tiskell on some of the things the RE got up to during the war. Did you know that at one point they were quarrying 10,000t of gravel a day in northwestern Europe? The Whitworth Society heard a paper about their founder. The Diesel Engines Users Association is having a dinner.

Letters D. H. Mallinson and W. G. E. Lewis of the National Gas Turbine Institute are upset that Mr. Sterland said in Engineering that marine gas turbine installations have no future in commercial use, and object that he only really considered simple installations, when very complicated ones with reheat and intercooling would be much more efficient.

Obituaries covers the death of Professor C. H. Landes, long of the Imperial College of Science and Technology, but recently hired away to the Military College of Science after reaching the ICST's mandatory retirement age. Born in 1881 and associated with many things over many years, it looks as though Fido will be his distinguishing mark. ("No thanks," says Reggie.)

"The Wigmore Concrete Consistometer" is yet another catalogue-article, but I want to go into this one a bit more because of what it is, which is basically a sort of pounding-hammer for pounding concrete out in the field to determine just how easy it will be to work. It's hard to get complete consistency from concrete mixers from place to place, it seems. Who knew?

Lanches and Trials  All the activity from last week is held over. MS Melrose, Queen of the Channel, Gorgulho, Belas, British Yeoman, and Trevelyan; and SS Stina Dan, Donna Isodora, Poole Channel and Mole all launched or trialled this week. One tanker, one dredger, two colliers, one passenger vessel, otherwise all cargo liners, some refrigerated.

"Accelerated Weathering of Paints"The Paint Laboratory of the British Railway Laboratories for Scientific Research have "devoted considerable attention to this, ever since buying a Weather-o-Meter from the Atlas Electrical Device Company of Chicago in 1947.

Of similarly specialist interest is Dr. L. C. Bannister, "Spectographic Determination of Copper in Lead Alloys."

Engineering has received Fred H. Colvin's Boring and Turning Machinery, and Bernard Alfieri's Photographic Machinery. The former is a good review of a growing subject, while the latter turns the engineer's eye to artistic production but may be of use for the effective reproduction of technical papers. Engineering is informed that Callender's has recently produced an underground cable capable of carrying 220 kvA at 220 kV, consisting of three copper cores embedded in some two hundred layers of metallised paper with copper binding and a lead sheath, and porcelain end pieces. Engineering was invited to an Institution of Civil Engineering exhibition of pre-stressed concrete, the highlight of which were a 24sft by 120ft slab stressed to take a 60 ton aircraft at London Airport, and a water tank stressed by tightened wires distributed parabolically across the basin rather than in a straight pattern.

Time, 28 March 1949

Way off in Topeka or Peoria or Walla Walla, or wherever it is that they make sure that issues of Newsweek go out so that people can flip through them and look at the pictures and think about reading them after they've read the other thirty that have piled up before it, someone decided to fiddle with the mailing list and set it on fire or some such. The upshot is that she couldn't get her issues without buying anew subscription, which, of course, Newsweek would be happy to refund. This was not exactly her highest priority, and that is why you have a second look at Mr. Luce's organ this month. No Henry Hazlitt to hate!


The President called Drew Pearson an SOB, and around this land of ours, ears are ringing and purse straps are clutched. J. M. Russakoff of New York City points out that if professors like Sidney Hook are serious about refuting Communism, they should make less of an effort to find out secret communists, and more of an effort to refuting communism. Robert Beresford of San Jose writes to point out that the "Mobilhome" was invented by Hugh Curran, not "Hugh Kern." Fred Levy, of Blum's candy, writes to point out that they are using more machinery to make candy more cheapily, not to make cheaper candy. Several correspondents are upset that the Pope won't stop the persecution of Protestants in Spain. The Publisher's Letter looks back at Time's Rob Low's three years as Eastern European correspondent, during which time he discovered that Communism was bad, while average eastern Europeans were good.

National Affairs leads off with several stories about the signing of the  North Atlantic Pact and the Soviet propaganda effort against it, naming all the names of the fellow travellers in America who are lending their name to it, such as Albert Einstein, Thomas Mann, Henry Wallace, Charlie Chaplin,Sarah Gibson Blanding and Irwin Edman. If you haven't heard of the last two, they're not famous and so have to roll over for Time's intimidation and back out of sponsoring Dmitri Shostakovich's upcoming American tour.

"Southern Supremacy" Everyone has agreed not to put civil rights to a vote, so the filibuster is over. You might think that this is because GOP senators lined up with Southern Democrats, but actually it is because the Administration didn't try hard enough. Senator Wayne Morris warned that the "birth of a new de facto political party" was bad news for Taft-Hartley repeal, and rent control. Silly President Truman, thinking that being elected with a solid mandate would somehow convince the Senate to go along with him.

. . . In New York, a jury has been successfully empannelled in the Smith Act prosecution, so that Judge Medina can get along with running a trial of Communist leaders for thinking Communist thoughts. Another Franklin Roosevelt is running for congress in New York. He's some kind of collateral relation. Various labour disputes have been resolved without strikes, because of the business recession that I guess is happening, I guess. In Indiana, farmers are still buying deep freezers and such, even though prices are down. No murder stories this week, but a woman on relief in Massachusetts hid her illegitimate son in an attic and let him half-starve, and a radio shop owner in Los Angeles tried to bilk a widow out of her "dingy" home with a mechanic's lien on a lease-to-buy radio worth $25.

Americana reports that ornithologist Roger Tory Peterson thinks that bird watching would be good for US neurotics, that Detroit's Fire Commission will equip battalion chiefs with hand extinguishers. Also, Time's Dirty Old Man is back on the Americana beat.


Hurrah! More Atlantic Pact stories! In somewhat related news, the western zone authorities will no longer accept the Eastern zone mark as legal tender, while Brigadier General Frank Howley promised a further expansion of the airlift, and the United States is protesting that Russia isn't living up to the Trianon treaty commitments to be really, really mean to the former eastern zone Axis powers, while in northern Norway, being neighbours to Russians is hard for Norwegians, because communism is bad.

"The Tranquil Admiral" Rear Admiral William Parsons, the Navy's director of atomic defence, says that going underground to escape the terrors of the atomic age would be "Like an overarmoured destroyer, . . . overprotected cities would find themselves 'safe' but paralysed." Admiral Parsons says that if we build against tornadoes, fires and earthquakes, buildings would be that much safer against atom bombs, and perhaps over the years some small things might be done; but, in the main, it is a matter of "calculated risk." Too bad, because I think some people were pretty excited about the idea of underground cities!

"Towards Recovery" Britain is off clothes rationing, and the Board of Trade's "Operation Godiva" us underway! Or was supposed to be, as in fact the stores only saw a modest surge in towels and sheets, not a mad rush for clothes. Rationing was also eased for gasoline, but tightened for meat, as Argentina struck back in negotiations and cut supplies by 20%.  Sir Stafford's Economic Surveey says that the trade deficit is down from £630 million to £120 million, with a small trade surplus as of year's end that should not be counted upon to continue. There is, however, still a $1.5 billion dollar gap. The output of British industry is up 12%, while the number of workers is only up 2%, and steel beat targets. However, one reason the clothes ration was dropped was that Britain was unable to sell all of its textiles abroad, so good times may come to an abrupt end with "incipient economic illness."

"Towards Stagnation" In spite of the sting at the end, that sounded far too optimistic, so here is a crib from The Economist, which finds that the British are spending 40% of the national income on government things compared with 25% in the US. (I am being cheeky, but I don't think that lumping defence in with the NHS and the airlines is helpful) This is too much, because it discourages the "successful and energetic," and probably Geoffrey Crowther, also too. Possibly it will be harder in the future to balance the books, because 40% is already too much, so they won't be able to raise taxes. Also there is the usual to-do about capital investment. In America, this happens when private companies borrow from banks; in Britain, it has to come from public funds, and because 40% is too much, there is not enough, says The Economist. Even Time has trouble parsing this, so it turns to a study by Oxford University that shows that the real income of the British middle class fell 9% in 1938--47, while that of the working class rose 7%. ('Middle class" is  more than £250/year; "Working class" is the 84% of the population below that income.) Labour checked this in 1947, but the study says that the trend will resume, and Time adds that since the gradually impoverished middle class will be less and less able to save for investment, and the balance will certainly not be made up by the working class, as the working class needs to buy things like milk, dentures and education, it follows that only the state can make up the lack via taxes, which are already too high, so there you go.

"It Belongs to Us" Time's John Luter went down the road from Tel Aviv towards Jerusalem towards the former Arab town of Akir, where the baked-mut huts have been abandoned by 500 families and replaced by an assortment of Jews from Bulgaria and Yemen who don't particularly like living in mud huts, and who haven't jobs other than a bit of orange picking as yet, but who are optimistic about the future and quite confident that the Arabs won't be back. "It belongs to us, now." Meanwhile, "[f]ew of the Arabs refugees want to return to their ancestral homes in a Jewish state. They have an aversion to it like the attitude of the Jews toward a Europe from which they were driven by a rampant nationalism. But if many Arab refugees did want to return, they would not be allowed to do so. Israel has made it clear . . . the door is closed to Arabs."

In Italy, they cannot kick out either Catholics or Communists, so the two have to live together, not for lack of trying to find another way forward, see "driven by a rampant nationalism." Lots of Jews, i recall, in spite of being a girl of 21 summers, were not so much driven out of Europe by "rampant nationalism" as  . . .

As of this month, you can seriously wonder whether it will be France or Russiathat tests an atom bomb, first. 
"Saint-Sylvestre's Forty-Niners" Saint-Sylvestre in Limoges has had a uranium strike and uranium boom. The ore is not nearly as rich as that from the Belgian Congo, but it might be worth mining to keep France self-reliant in uranium, which, the locals point out, can power trains as well as bombs.

In Russia, it is news that the elusive mountaineers of the Caucasus are, like inhabitants of Shangri-La, very long lived, very good looking, and perhaps a bit fictional. Over in Moscow, the literary world is upset that Pocket Books has brought out an American edition of Anna Karenina for 25 cents, while Russia's chief censor is quoted as saying that America has the worst censorship of all.

"A Sneer for a Prince" India isn't the only new country in South Asia with a princely state problem. Pakistan's Bahawalpur state has a romantic history (being supposedly founded by Arab warriors from old Baghdad in the 10th century), and an ostentatious Amir with the usual fittings --four wives, silver throne, Negro attendant-- and a developing problem with the authorities in Islamabad.

In Latin America, Colombia cannot decide whether to have an election or a coup, Costa Rica has had to disband the Caribbean Legion before it could head off to depose Somoza or Trujillo. Guatemala, which has been promoting the spread of "democratic revolution," is upset, Hondurans are cynical, and I have no idea what is going on down there.


"Parade Down"

Various companies are cutting prices, which might or might not be a sign of trouble to come.

"Clipper Skipper" This weeks' cover story subject is Juan Trippe of Pan American, coming the week the Stratocruiser enters service to "revolutionise air travel, just as the Stratocruiser's older brother, the B-29, rewrote the book on strategic bombing." Frankly, I think that tourist fares are more likely to revolutionise air travel than the Stratocruiser, but what do I know? Nothing! I'm just a girl. A girl who doesn't really see a "revolutinanry" improvement from the Constellation to the Stratocruiser. Jets, yes. A plane with the range to never have to go to Iceland, yes. But aside from that. . . ?

Shorter news has the SEC finding that the costs of registration are not impeding the formation of capital, and reports that Colonel Landsdell K. Christie has found a mountain of iron in Liberia that he is trying to mine, having already spent $1.5 million on a road from Monrovia to the mountain, 45 miles away. He expects to spend another $8 million on a railroad and a port, and says that with 30 million tons to export, it will make a profit for himself and investor Republic Steel .

Science, Medicine, Education

"Man-Made Inferno" People have been talking about setting coal on fire in the mine and taking the gas off directly. Alabama Power Company is trying it at its Gorgas Mine, dropping thermite bombs into the shafts and taking the exhaust gas off of boreholes. Its measurements show that the temperature in the mines has hit 3000 degrees. It hasn't actually tried to use the dangerously explosive, mixed and toxic gas yet, but it did get a half million dollar grant from the Bureau of Mines to set fire to a half million tons of coal that was just sitting there.

"Epizootics to Order" If you thought that setting fire to coal in the ground to maybe collect its gas byproduct was crazy, here is a pair of University of California etymologists who propose to fight insect pests by cultivating and improving animal epidemics ("epizootics") so that they instantly kill green alfalfa caterpillars, achatinas and whatnot in horrible ways. This is very promising, because the last effort to stop them, cultivating large beetles to eat them, ran aground when the triumphant beetles became a replacement pest. Who could have seen that coming? Good thing that there's a virus spray to spread a beetle epizootic!

"Word from the Experts" People have been debating the question of pain relief in childbirth. Eventually, things became heated enough that someone decided to ask women physicians who had had children, on the grounds that they knew medicine and childbirth. They said, by a margin of 184 out of 196 replying (of 300 surveyed), that it was. "The pain was an intense surprise," says Dr. Kitty Kate Conrad. Nevertheless, British midwives continue to argue against anaesthesia, wanting mothers fully conscious to follow their orders. Parliament, nevertheless, is still debating the best way to teach analgesia to midwives. If only men got pregnant, etc. (The next story is about how one in ten people in America have allergies, and what an unbearable burden the sniffles are. Two stories down is a dentist who uses anaesthesia because some people can't bear the sound of drills.)

"Enjoying Old Age" It is estimated that, in the United States, by 1980, more than 40% of the population will be over 45 (so ancient!). Doctors hope to make them a bit spryer, with vitamins and such, if not hormones, which don't seem to have any effect.

British historian Max Beloff thinks that American universities are "spoon-feeding" their students, while Principal Joe Harrell of Thomas Edison School in West Dallas has a sideline as a barber, running a shop next to his office, because it is good for his student's health(!)

Press, Radio and Television, Art, People

"The Battle of the Books" The Saturday Review of Literature blasted the New York Times and Herald Tribune for its "unscientific" best seller lists that surveys a few stores with "no pretense" of a statistical method. The Review calls for a statistical bureau to release best seller lists. Some publishers are delighted by the idea, while others think that it is impractical.

Next is a story about a clash between the President's press secretary and the press pool during the President's Key West vacation which might explain why the press coverage went so sour. Finally, long stories about how Hearst appointed a blowhard to be editor of Town and Country and is being kept alive by the heart-science medicine of the nation's foremost scientific vivisectionist, and is therefore a hypocrite.

"Booby Trap" Last week, while disassembling a war surplus radio, he found a "6-in. cylinder labelled 'Destructor'" in the middle. It contained two dynamite caps and a tube of thermite, and was for blowing up the IFF sets in wartime bombers in case they crashed in enemy-held territory. The War Surplus Administration told all dealers to take the Destructor out, but a check of a store in Benton Harbour, Michigan, turned up 1000 sets with Destructors intact. Oops! On the bright side, the kind of ham who would disassemble IFFs are probably skillful enough to avoid accidents, burns and blindness.

Once again, two living European artists. I am going to have to stop making fun of Time if this keeps up. Anyway, Balthasar Klossowsky and Colin Middleton are featured in this week's section.

The Shamrock hotel's opening was quite a party. Actress Ruth Chatterton is in trouble with the Ritz Tower Hotel for cooking in her three room suite, as she is producing "powerful odours." Gertrude Farrar welcomed Ljuba Welitsch as the Met's new "glamour girl." Anthony Eden and Ernest Bevin are shocking people by being poorly dressed, Ralph Bunche is this year's most accomplished Negro, Evalyn Walsh McLean's estate is trying so sell her estate for expenses, including the Hope Diamond, Field-Marshal Montgomery says that the Scots are the toughest British soldiers, Bette Davis is being sued by the Internal Revenue for eight grand in back taxes. James Somerville's death is reported. Cecil Howard Lander, remembered for work on jet engines and Fido, has also died, of a heart attack, also Edward Loughborough Keyes, and Senator Thomas Gore (cerebral hemorrhage)

New Pictures

The Red Pony is a slight version of a slight Steinbeck. Take Me Out to the Ball Game is a slight movie, too, although since it is a musical, it has to be a slight musical, and I am not sure how you do that, especially when you have Sinatra and Gene Kelly and Esther Williams in a swimsuit, of course. Impact is a movie about a business tycoon who runs away when his wife tries to have him murdered and gets a job fixing old cars for a pretty garage owner (I see where this is going!), until he is all better, and Ella Raines and Brian Donlevy can have impossibly pretty children.


Arthur Butler Hubert's  Forty-Niners is a popular history of the gold rush that is reviewed to set off Joseph Henry Jackson's Gold Rush Album, which is the real story here. Isabel Bolton's latest, The Christmas Tree, is a disappointment. I notice an obsession with the "femininity" of the novel that recalls the review of Elizabeth Taylor's book, last year. (Not the jailbait starlet, the author.) Robert Graves' Watch the North Wind Rise is the follow-up to The White Goddess, and sounds  like more of the old crackpot's obsession. (More precisely, I've been told exactly that.)

Flight, 31 March 1949


"Tumbled Straws" Flight is worried that the RAF isn't going to get enough money to stop communism, even though it is getting lots of money to stop communism. The problem is that Trenchard wants it to get even more money.

"The Elusive Plan" Flight is also concerned that defence isn't planned enough in a properly coordinated way. Also, Flight must have been reading really old newspapers, because it is suddenly referring to the members of the House of Lords as "Noble Lords" and spelling people's names in ALL CAPITALS. Except for Lord Pakenham. Hopefully not just because he is a socialist.

"Harbingers" The first BOAC Canadair Four is like the first swallow of spring, a harbinger of better times, a happy sign that the doldrums of British civil aviation are ov-- Oh, drat it, where are the Hermes? Never mind, first word of the Comet is out. It will fly at 500mph over 36,000 ft with 36 passengers in "real comfort and safety." It is the White Hope of the nation, although Flight hopes that the Saro Princess will be even more white hope-ish.

"The De Havilland Comet" Well, this is exciting, especially coming just a week after the Apollo got just a bit more real. (I've lost track of whether it has had a real premiere, yet.) The DH 106 will have moderate sweepback, outward-retracting undercarriage, an underwing pressure-refuelling system, a short undercarriage leg due to the lack of an airscrew, moderate wing loading, modest stall speed, and will operate from normal runways. Cabin pressure will be to 8 1.4 lb/sq in, almost double the pressure in current airliners. It is appropriately air conditioned and cooled, and has gone extensive water tank testing at Haslar to make sure that the fuselage doesn't burst under all that  air. Thirty-six passengers will be accommodated in reclining sleeperette chairs, and there will be 4 crew. The Ghost engines currently give 5000lbs thrust, allowing for that 500mph speed. The production order has been accelerated by a pre-production order for 16 aircraft.

"Dart Type-Tested at 1250 shp" This is not the Dart RDa.3 planned for the Viscount, which gives 140shp plus 295lbs thrust for takeoff, but it is coming along, too; it is a more complicated job, because its reduction gearing will use helical gears for both high and low speed, and they are harder to stress than flat gears. Heavy commercial demand is expected, and Rolls Royce is shifting manpower from the Tay, Nene and Avon to get it ready. Pitch, power and temperature are to be controlled through a single-level power control, but this is still being finalised. Right now, it controls the csu through a cam, but it will need to be replaced by a temperature control. Fine-pitch, feathering, and overspeeding of the pitch change mechanism all have automatic control processes where inappropriate behaviour modifies the inputs in a "feedback." (My word, ont Flight's. They haven't gone all electrical engineer on you.) The one problem so far is that the airscrew blades are too small to absorb more power, which is an issue with methanol/water cooling, which is therefore only recommended for high-altitude fields and tropical temperatures.

Here and There
This makes no sense. 

Flight hears that the Avro Canada Chinook axial turbojet gives 1lb/lb thrust hour fuel consumption, and consumes 2lb oil per hour. A Firefly and a Sea Fury were lost at sea during the rcent naval/air exercises, although both pilots were picked up by launches in Plymouth water. BSAA employees have organised a public protest against the absorption of their "small and successful" airline into the large and comparatively unsuccessful BOAC." Four airliner crashes involving the loss of all on board in  a bit more than two years apparently counts as successful. An RF-80 (the reconnaissance variant of the Lockheed F-80) has been equipped with three vertical cameras so that it can stalk the ducks of the San Joaquin Valley. Floyd Odom's solo flight from that one place to that other place is a record or something. The Convair  delta, originally designed to get up over a thousand mph, is being retained to test stability and control at speeds up to 450mph. It has a 5200lb turbo and a ramjet for extra thrust, and has an endurance of 30 minutes. The RNZAF recently loaned a Grumman Avenger to the Soil Conservation and Rivers Control Project of New Zealand for aerial sowing of 50 acres. Further experiments will use a Miles Aerovan. The last Armstrong Whitworth Whitley has been broken up, having come to the end of its life as an AW52 tug. McDonnell has been told that it won't be allowed to call its XF-88 a "Voodoo," but "Apache," "Tornado" and "Challenger" are allowed as alternatives for the B-45.  Currently, American planes are carrying three quarters of the load into Berlin, and British and Commonwealth aircraft the remainder.

Siskins, I believe. 
Canadian Jubilee" There has been an RCAF for twenty-five years, so here is a collection of photographs of Canadians being airminded.

"German Helicopters: Wartime Research Reviewed in a BIOS Report" Captain Liptrot, which is a real name,, went over to Germany to talk to German workers about the helicopters they built for the thousand year Reich. One of them was a Foche-Angelis, which is a strange-sounding name that reflects the fact that Mr. Focke, of Focke-Wulf, was fired by the Nazis and joined up with some fellow named Achgelis to build a Nazi-hating helicopter that was well-funded for some reason that has nothing to do with everyone making excuses for their behaviour over the last thousand years, give or take 988.  Another helicopter, with intermeshing rotors, was the Flettner Fl. 2665, of which 1000 were ordered, although due to an Allied bombing raid only 22 were completed. Kurt Tank proposed a three-bladed rotor set inside a circular section fuselage with propulsive ducts at the blade tips and rockets for starting, that would have given a calculated 620mph at sea level and 520mph at 36,000ft. Other "interesting experiments and projects" are described.

In shorter news, the second BSAA Avro York on the Miami-Nassau route is to have fluorescent cabin lighting courtesy of GEC, Pirelli-General, and the unnamed maker of a rotary converter drawing from the aircraft 24v system to give three-phase, 400hz output at 110v.

"Tailless Twins: New Comparative Data on the Two Versions of the AW52 Research Aircraft" Preceded by gliders (towed by a Whitley, we learned today!), the A.W. 52 has been very useful proving the tailless configuration for future bombers and airliners, and has already demonstrated boundary-layer suction. In spite of fairly full performance data, however, the only indication of the results of the stability and control experiments is that it has a very nice anti-spin parachute packed.

"Cost of Conversion" Explaining the reason that carrier fighters are such dogs (Reggie said it, not me!), Sidney Camm points out that "navalising" fighters recently added 900lbs to a jet fighter and 425 to a prop fighter. More than half the total on the jet fighter was taken up by special flaps for lift and drag control, while the Sea Fury required arrestor gear (26lbs), RATO and catapult fittings (26lbs), fuselage strengthening (22lbs), undercarriage strengthening and shock absorber improvement (42lbs) and "operational equipoment," 105lbs.

The Flader J-55 turbojet is 79 inches, diameter 14 3/4, aspirates 15.4lbs of air a second, gives 770lb thrust, and a compression ratio of 2.75, which, I am told, is very, very high. It is in production for the USAF for pilotless aircraft, although Flader is enthusiastic about its possibilities as an auxiliary boost for small commercial aircraft. Flader is also working on an XT-33 turboprop for the USAF that is being designed for an output of 7,500hp(!). I'd offer the rest of the details but I assume that they're about as carefully thought out or transcribed as the power output figure. Over your way, Canadian Pacific is converting the Boeing plant on Sea Island into a maintenance base for its four Canadairs and other aircraft for domestic routes. A thousand employees will be engaged there.

Civil Aviation News
Seventy years on, high-paying blue collar jobs and the
idyllic (but noisy) communities of Burkeville and
Cora Brown have become an international airport and a
massive outlet mall. 

Everything is expanding and improving and adding new services and also zeros to operating deficits. London Airport has acquired new lighting, about which we've heard, and bookstalls and a restaurant, about which we have not. Accident fndings for the Hargreaves Airways crash on the Isle of Man that killed five leads the Inspector to remind pilots that not all airfield homing and DF beacons are located on runways, which might lead them to fly into twelve-hundred feet hills that are between them and the beacon. Pan Am received its first Stratocruiser, the Flying Cloud, this week, and will begin operating it over the Atlantic in April.

"Double Mamba" Flight (actually Caroline Bailey-Watson, letting the side down) mumbles and stumbles its way into a discussion of a paired installation of the Armstrong-Siddeley Mamba installation driving an airscrew or two through  coaxial shafts. It is like it is writing before its morning coffee, and I can relate, or am projecting, because that is what I am doing, because I am working early, which means that I do not have to give Mr. Folger my money today. Mr. Folger has enough money already, and Ronnie doesn't! Ahem. For all the flailing, it's pretty simple, as the Mambas are just lined up one behind the other. They're a bit improved on last year's model, although small gains in rpm and thrust amount to an increase in mass flow from 310 to 403 ft/sec. A.S. also rebuilt the compressor to add two stages. Flight goes on to explain the transmission, which involves the usual assortment of gears and torquemeters and shafts, some detail. And if that's not enough gears for you, the accessory drives have to be able to take off from either engine, in case one dies, which is the advantage of these double-engine-on-one-airscrew installations. (That is why Fairey and the Royal Navy is so interested in double engines, if you were thinking to yourself, "That's just like the Fairey Monarch! Your son was. Your son knows more about these things than is strictly healthy.)

Allan F. Voak, "Amphibiana: Some Reminiiscences of Wheels-and-Water Aircraft, and a Plea for Their Development" Voak flew Sea Otters in the war and thinks that aircraft that can land in water or on land are very keen, thinks that they have a bright future, and is excited about the Tribian. I'm just at a loss. Surely he has noticed just how frequently these projects are announced, and just how quickly they fail! How am I supposed to trust someone so silly? It takes away from the whole magazine!

"Tudor VIII Cabin Boost: Details of the Marshall Supercharger Installation" Like the Mambas aboe, the Nenes in the Tudor VIII are in a coupled mounting, and the Marshall blowers are driven from a complicated gearbox that allows it to keep running even if one of the Nenes stopped. The blower is two stage, with an intercooler, Details are vague, but the latest version delivers 25lbs/minute intake under the same conditions as the previous  Type 15, which gave 15 lb/minute to give 800ft ambient pressure equivalent at 25,000ft. Below is a short feature about progress on the Saro 45 Princes,, mainly covering hull construction details, but going into the float retraction arrangement in a bit more detail.

Social news is then covered with a story about a reunion of N. 38 Group, the inter-services rugby title, and a look at the Royal Aero Club's year.

"Aircraft and Runway Design:Two Precis of Papers by P. H. Watson and C. E. Foster Given at the Joint Meeting on Runway Design of the Institution of Civil Engineers and the Royal Aeronautical Society" Most of the precis is spent laying out the issue, which is that bigger planes require bigger and stronger runways. Most people think eventually no-one will be able to pay for bigger runways, which would limit airplane designs and bring flying boats back. "Most people" have not been paying attention, because they've been saying that for years, and ignoring the fact that flying boats don't just land anywhere! There are a few nuggets of actual fact, such as that all those schemes for swivelling undercarriages have failed because no-one wants them, which is not a point of view you get from the technical press, where all the articles are written by promoters. Also, tandem wheel arrangements sound like more trouble than they're worth. But those are pretty small points for all the paper, so here is a clip of an interesting chart showing how tyres and pavement loads get bigger as planes grow. More interestingly, the chief engineer for London Airport, J. A. Dawson, points out that new airliners are getting better at landing in crosswinds, and if this keeps up, we can rubbish all current predictions of airport and runway costs. However, H. G. Conway, of British Messier chimed in to point out that when the DC-6 Globemaster was used at Gatow, it took only 23 landings to damage the runway so much that the plane had to be withdrawn. Meanwhile, the Americans were working on a 200lb/ square inch tyre for the B-45, which would do even more damage to runways.


 K. J. Sibley thinks that the RAF can make up its manpower by raiding the navy and army reserves. "Halton Apprentice" writes in to point out that the much-criticised RAF toolkit has been upgradedd. W. A. McCorudale has opinions about the aerodynamics of storks. Owen Thetford and J. B. Gould remember the old days and R. D. Wood of the RAFVR thinks that the RAFVR should be issued with modern fighters, as tootling around in Chipmunks isn't doing anything for anyone. Which seems like just as sensible an argument against having the RAFVR as for giving it Spitfires (or Vampires), if you ask me.

. . . So if you are wondering about what is up in America, Aviation Week is all agog over the B-36 controversy, coming out in an editorial for an end to "B-36 rumours" and for the Air Force to come clean on said rumours. Can the B-36 really fly at 40,000ft and avoid American jet fighters? Doe this justify cancelling so many jet fighter orders? Are jet fighters like the  Curtiss XF7U-1 lost last week over the Bay of Delaware and turning up in bits and pieces as flotsam this week, really ready for service?

Some people say that consolidating all the services' photographic activities under the new PRO is a way to hide atomic secrets, such as which cities the B-36s we are definitely building are going to blow up. Europe says that if the B-36 is a go, so is the Atlantic Pact, because it means that America will protect it, after all. Makes sense! (No, it doesn't.) The first launch of the WAC Corporal two-stage rocket is briefly mentioned (and a heliograph to track it is one of two major technical articles this end of the month, the other being about progress in turbine blade metallurgy.) A story about the Navy's carrierborne Neptune tests spends at least as much time on the Savage and its proposed swept-wing jet replacement as it does the actual Neptune trials, which the Navy says show equivalent performance to recent B-36 demonstrations. (4000 miles in twenty hours dropping 10,000lbs of bombs versus 5000 miles carrying a bomb during a 9600 43h mission.)

I am not sure that I approve of the Navy's official atom war plan being to send my fiance on a one-way mission against Moscow, but at least he won't have to worry about landing a Neptune on  the USS Franklin Roosevelt. A technical, but not research related equation lays out how to calculate bomber ranges, just in case anyone is interested in knowing why some engineers doubt claimed performance for the B-36.

Also, James McGraw has a line editorial calling on the businessmen and engineers of America to fight socialism. Sigh. Junior. The son of the founder wants us all to fight socialism for him. 

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