Author: tbsmith

Real Thaw 2022: The Portuguese Multi-Domain Exercise

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Real Thaw 22
The take-off of 2 Portuguese F-16AMs each with the tail paint referring to the squadron to which they belong, 201st Falcões and 301st Jaguares. (All images: Author)

Let’s focus on Real Thaw 2022, a large scale multi-domain exercise led by the Portuguese Air Force.

Real Thaw is an annual military exercise, organized, planned, and executed by the Portuguese Air Force to train and prepare its operational units to carry out missions in the framework of international cooperation at NATO and European Union level.

Coordinated from Air Base 11 in Beja, between June 26 and July 8, 2022, the activities were mostly carried out in central Portugal.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80356" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_4/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_4.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"","camera":"Canon EOS 7D","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1657026503","copyright":"","focal_length":"105","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.0005","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_4" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Front line where the Portuguese Air Force F-16AM/BM fighters were parked from 201st and 301st Squadron.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-14.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-1.jpg” class=”size-large wp-image-80356″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-1.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-1.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-14.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-15.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-16.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_4.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Front line where the Portuguese Air Force F-16AM/BM fighters from 201st and 301st Squadron were parked.

Objectives

The main goals of Real Thaw 2022 were to provide training to the tactical level forces with the participants focusing on the execution phase, considering the training objectives, constrains and restrictions inherent in military exercises, a special scenario was developed for the drills to meet the following requirements:

  • Provide an operating environment as realistic as possible and typical of current operations in which Portuguese military may participate.
  • Provide appropriate training to various participants taking into account the different types and assets (air, land and sea) and respective training requirements.
  • Provide interoperability between countries and respective means.
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80357" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_5/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_5.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"","camera":"Canon EOS 7D","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1657026534","copyright":"","focal_length":"105","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.000625","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_5" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Tails of the Portuguese F-16s where the special paintings are visible, one of the 201st “Falcões” and two of the 301st “Jaguares”.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-17.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-2.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80357″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-2.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-2.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-17.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-18.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-19.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_5.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Tails of the Portuguese F-16s where the special paintings are visible, one of the 201st “Falcões” and two of the 301st “Jaguares”.

Participants

This year’s Real Thaw was the largest ever in terms of personnel and air assets, despite many air forces are contributing to the NATO operations in eastern Europe following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

This eleventh edition of RT22, saw the participation of 54 air assets and 900 military personnel and involved all the Portuguese national armed forces, Air Force, Navy and Army and military forces from France, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, Lithuania, the United States and NATO. This provides further objectives for all participating nations to prepare for international missions in operational scenarios.

Portugal as host nation, participated with a large share of air assets: 10x F-16AM (201st Squadron “Falcões” and 301st Squadron “Jaguares” ); 2x AW-119 Koala ( 552nd Squadron “Zangões”), 1x EH-101 Merlin ( 751st Squadron “Pumas”), 1 C-130H Hercules ( 501st Squadron “Bisontes”), 1 C-295-M Persuader (502nd Squadron “Elefantes”), and 2x P-3C Cup+ Orion (601st Squadron “Lobos”), as well as Navy and Army forces.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80367" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_23/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_23.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"7.1","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656609510","copyright":"","focal_length":"185","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.0004","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_23" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Return of the Rafale with the special painting commemorating the 80th anniversary of the squadron.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-20.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-3.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80367″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-3.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-3.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-20.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-21.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-22.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_23.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Return of the Rafale with the special painting commemorating the 80th anniversary of the squadron.
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80358" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_2/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_2.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"16","credit":"","camera":"Canon EOS 7D","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656592325","copyright":"","focal_length":"105","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_2" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Helicopters present at Real Thaw belonging to Squadron 751 “Pumas” (EH-101) and Squadron 552 Zangões (AW-119).

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-23.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-4.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80358″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-4.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-4.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-23.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-24.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-25.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_2.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Helicopters present at Real Thaw belonging to Squadron 751 “Pumas” (EH-101) and Squadron 552 Zangões (AW-119).
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80359" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_3/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_3.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"16","credit":"","camera":"Canon EOS 7D","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656593855","copyright":"","focal_length":"62","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_3" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Two P-3C Cup+ belonging to Esquadra 601 Lobos that were involved in RT22.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-26.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-5.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80359″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-5.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-5.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-26.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-27.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-28.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_3.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Two P-3C Cup+ belonging to Esquadra 601 Lobos that were involved in RT22.

Belgium participated with 6x F-16AM ( 31st Squadron “Tigers”), France with 5x Rafales (Squadron 2/30 Normandie-Niemen), 1x E-3F AWACS and 1x A-330 MRTT, Spain with 5x EF-2000 Typhoon ( Ala 11, Moron AB ); United States took part with 18 F-16CM (480th Fighter Squadron, 52nd Fighter Wing Spangdahlem AB) and 1x KC-135 Stratotanker and from NATO were present 2x E-3F AWACS. And JTACs (Joint Terminal Attack Controller) from Portugal, Belgium, United States, Netherlands and from Lithuania also participated.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80360" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_9/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_9.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656584439","copyright":"","focal_length":"430","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.000625","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_9" data-image-description data-image-caption="

The new paint of a fully armed Spangdahlem F-16CJ.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-29.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-6.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80360″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-6.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-6.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-29.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-30.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-31.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_9.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

The new paint of a fully armed Spangdahlem F-16CM.
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80361" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_7/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_7.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"20","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656582968","copyright":"","focal_length":"600","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_7" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Tactical take-off of two Rafales from Squadron 2/30 Normandie-Niemen in RT22.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-32.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-7.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80361″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-7.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-7.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-32.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-33.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-34.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_7.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Tactical take-off of two Rafales from Squadron 2/30 Normandie-Niemen in RT22.
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80362" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_13/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_13.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656599448","copyright":"","focal_length":"600","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.0005","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_13" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Take-off of Belgian Air Force 31 Squadron F-16AM X-Tiger for a training mission in RT22

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-35.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-8.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80362″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-8.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-8.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-35.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-36.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-37.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_13.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Take-off of Belgian Air Force 31 Squadron F-16AM X-Tiger for a training mission in RT22
<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80363" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_19/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_19.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656605478","copyright":"","focal_length":"279","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.000625","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_19" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Detail of the salute of the Spanish pilot on the returning to the park area.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-38.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-9.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80363″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-9.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-9.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-38.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-39.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-40.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_19.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Detail of the salute of the Spanish pilot on the returning to the park area.

Participating in the ground was a Force Protection Unit and air traffic controllers, while other involved units included the Portuguese army military special OPS team, paratroopers and high-altitude operational jumpers and the Navy Special Actions Detachment, and a large number of militaries from maintenance areas, support, operations, information, audio-visual and public affairs relations all took part.

Main Missions

The missions were essentially air defense, convoy protection in humanitarian missions, close air support to ground forces and special operations, extraction operations of military and civilian elements, cargo and paratroopers drop operations, combat Search and Rescue, medical evacuations, civil – military cooperation, conventional guided and high accuracy ordinance attacks, and conventional attacks on maritime forces.

During this year’s iteration, aerial refueling missions were also carried out to increase the flight time of each aircraft.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80364" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_14/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_14.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"8","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656605331","copyright":"","focal_length":"389","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.0008","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_14" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Taxiing of two Portuguese Air Force F-16AMs.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-41.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-10.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80364″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-10.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-10.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-41.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-42.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-43.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_14.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Taxiing of two Portuguese Air Force F-16AMs.

Numbers of Real Thaw

A total of 436 military missions were carried out on the Real Thaw, the air assets flew around 750 hours, around 15,000 liters of water were distributed, and 16,500 meals were served.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80366" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_11/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_11.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"20","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656599209","copyright":"","focal_length":"150","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_11" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Tactical take-off of the C-295M.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-44.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-11.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80366″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-11.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-11.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-44.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-45.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-46.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_11.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Tactical take-off of the C-295M.

Conclusions

Since 2009, the Portuguese Air Command has conducted the Real Thaw exercise series annually. The favorable meteorological conditions make Real Thaw the ideal venue for NATO Allies to develop and hone flexible capabilities for current and future challenges.

Real Thaw is a fundamental exercise for the Portuguese military since it allows the air force to operate jointly within the Army, the Navy and other international forces to develop a better understanding of multi-national and Multi-service military operations. This level of preparations is vital for the successful of any assignment that the Portuguese forces might be called upon to perform and the Real Thaw provide the opportunity for crews to perform, practice and execute complex missions that currently are extremely important in the international area.

<img data-lazy-fallback="1" data-attachment-id="80365" data-permalink="https://theaviationist.com/2022/08/12/real-thaw-22/realthaw2022_21/" data-orig-file="https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_21.jpg" data-orig-size="1200,800" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"7.1","credit":"Jorge Ruivo","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1656608810","copyright":"","focal_length":"600","iso":"400","shutter_speed":"0.0008","title":"","orientation":"1"}" data-image-title="RealThaw2022_21" data-image-description data-image-caption="

Arrival of the Portuguese F-16BM with tiger-painted drop tanks.

” data-medium-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-47.jpg” data-large-file=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-12.jpg” loading=”lazy” class=”size-large wp-image-80365″ src=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-12.jpg” alt width=”706″ height=”471″ srcset=”https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-12.jpg 706w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-47.jpg 460w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-48.jpg 128w, https://getyourpilotslicense.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/real-thaw-2022-the-portuguese-multi-domain-exercise-49.jpg 768w, https://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/RealThaw2022_21.jpg 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 706px) 100vw, 706px”>

Arrival of the Portuguese F-16BM with tiger-painted drop tanks.

The Author wishes to thank the Public Relations of the Portuguese Air Force for the support provided in the preparation of this story.

About Jorge Ruivo
Jorge Ruivo is a freelance journalist based in Marinha Grande, Portugal. Since 2000, he has contributed with photography works and articles on the topic of Military Aviation published by the Portuguese press. More recently he has started working with various international media outlets publishing articles and photographs in several magazines, including Combat Aircraft and Airforces Monthly. His main areas of interest are the Portuguese Air Force, its flight squadrons, foreign deployments and military exercises.

The 9 Most Beautiful GA Airplanes

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It’s no secret that we pilots love airplanes, though the reasons why we do are, well, not so much mysterious as wide ranging and, at times, hard to pin down precisely. We love airplanes for what they are, where they can take us, and for reasons that are more related to aesthetics than utility. We feel that airplanes, at least some of them, are beautiful to behold. Part of that is the emotional mystery behind airplanes. They are, after all, doing something that, until 150 years ago, was impossible. So we have a reverence for aircraft that at its root is steeped in wonder.

Not everyone believes that beauty is a mystery. For the past couple of decades, mathematicians have been attempting to quantify what we find beautiful, notably in human faces, by probing the relationship of parts and their arrangement to the whole and trying to arrive at some kind of equation of beauty. Other scientists who are interested in the question of what we find beautiful are teaching computers to learn to replicate the judgments we make in finding things beautiful, so far mostly in photos of nature and people’s faces and not airplanes. At least not yet.

In formulating this list of beautiful general aviation airplanes, we’ve done none of that. Instead, we’ve relied upon the judgment of hundreds of thousands of other pilots, some still flying and some gone west, by naming airplanes to this short list that pilots for decades have been remarking upon in general as beautiful examples of flying machines. These are planes that pilots, when they see one on the ramp or at an airshow, will often stop to gaze at, sometimes for a long while.

In the process, we’ve surely picked a few that hardly anyone would disagree with. You’ll see. At the same time, it’s almost certain that we’ve picked a couple that you might disagree with, perhaps strongly.

To give our audience a voice in the process, we’ve decided to pick only nine of the most beautiful GA planes while giving you the chance to select the tenth. Later this year, we’ll take a poll based on your suggestions and reveal that choice. So, as you read, think about it. What beautiful GA plane did we leave off the list? Let us know simply by emailing us at [email protected].

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And as you’ll notice, too, we’ve only selected conventionally certificated GA planes, so you won’t see any P-51s, Constellations or Lancairs here, even if they are sometimes under the GA umbrella. We’ve also stuck to piston-powered planes, so bear that in mind, as well. And we can save all of those other conversations for a later date. Also, so as to make this a living, breathing list of the most beautiful GA planes, we decided to limit the field to airplanes built and produced within the lifespan of people who were alive to remember the era of World War II. Some of those people served in the Armed Forces and many of them later came home to become the pilots who would fuel the rise of general aviation in the United States into the segment that created some of the most beautiful machines ever made.

So, without further ado, we present nine of the 10 most beautiful airplanes in GA history.

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Friday Photo: a Stearman patiently waits

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Stearman

The sight: A Stearman

discovers well-earned remainder. The pilots: Bob Mills as well as Chris Schaich The aircraft: 1942 Boeing N2S-4 Stearman The goal:

Flying the Stearman from Ohio to Reno, Nevada.

The memory: This was completion of day 7 of a 9-day trip flying cross nation to obtain the aircraft to its brand-new house in May of 2020. We had actually been fighting high winds and also disturbance for 7 hrs by the time we landed at Winslow, AZ (INS). We pressed the large biplane out of the wind as well as right into the garage that the flight terminal FBO offered to us. After closing the doors as well as discharging, I took a min to absorb the sight. The old garage made as well as squeaked that lonesome wail as the wind objected our reprieve from its gusting harassment. This garage has actually meant several years at this famous flight terminal. Developed by noteworthy air travel tales Lindbergh as well as Hughes, the simple Stearman was currently protected in for the evening.

Wish to share your “Friday Photo?” Send your image as well as summary (making use of the style over) to: [e-mail safeguarded].

Chris Schaich is an energetic pilot with over 15,000 humans resources and also 7 kind scores. When not flying for the airline companies he is a warbird pilot as well as instructor/check pilot for the
Commemorative Air Force, Arizona Wing. Because 2011 he has actually competed in the Biplane and also Sport courses at the Reno National Championship Air Races. Latest blog posts by Chris Schaich(see all)

Image of The Week: Air Cam Low and also Slow at Sunrise

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This week’s Plane & Pilot Photo of the Week is from Kyle Morgan, that stays in the Golden Isles of Georgia. This stunning shot reveals a Lockwood Air Cam flying reduced by the coastline near Jekyll Island Airport, Georgia. Kyle stated he got the shot,” … throughout an early morning stroll to see the sunup. I saw an aircraft coming my means flying right along the coastline. I had my cam out taking images, and also I think he saw me as you can see him swing in the picture.” Morgan, that is rather brand-new to digital photography, made use of a Nikon D750 to record the photo. His job can be seen on his Instagram web page, @k. morganartistry. Many thanks for sharing this fantastic image, Kyle!

Let’s Talk About The Explosions That Rocked Russian Navy’s Saki Air Base In Crimea

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Crimea explosions
A photo of the smoke coming from Saki Air Base after the explosions. In the box: the destroyed Su-24 bomber. (Photos from Twitter)

Sources say it might be the result of a Ukrainian attack, but no official word from Ukrainian MoD yet. Russia denies the attack.

Massive explosions, visible from miles away, rocked a Russian airfield near Novofedorivka in Crimea on August 9, 2022, at about 15:20LT. The airfield in question is Saki Air Base, home of the Russian Navy Black Sea Fleet’s 43rd Independent Naval Attack Aviation Regiment (43 OMShAP), which flies Su-24 Fencer bombers and Su-30 Flanker fighter jets.

The cause of the explosions is not clear at the moment. A statement from the Russian Ministry of Defence says that the explosions originated from “violations of fire safety rules” which resulted in “several aviation munitions destroyed”, without damages to the airbase and aircraft and without victims. The officials also say “there are no signs or evidence that it was done deliberately.”

“As a result of the explosion, no one was injured. Aviation equipment at the airfield was not damaged,” says the statement released to the press. “Measures are being taken to extinguish the fire and find out the causes of the explosion. According to a report from the site, there was no fire impact on the bunded ammunition storage area at the airfield”

The Ukrainian MoD didn’t acknowledge an attack on the Crimean airfield, but some anonymous officers told the New York Times that the Ukrainian forces were behind the attack, but they did not elaborate on how it was performed, other than saying that “a device exclusively of Ukrainian manufacture was used.” The airfield is more than 200 km from the frontlines, well behind the reach of many Ukrainian weapons, including the Tochka-U Short-Range Ballistic Missile system, which has a range of about 120 km.

Either way, videos surfacing online, which have been geolocated at Saki Air Base, are showing the opposite of what has been disclosed to the press by the Russians. At least a Su-24 Fencer bomber has been completely destroyed on the flight line, and heavy damage can be seen throughout the airfield. Since satellite photos always show aircraft parked in close proximity on Saki’s apron, it is possible that multiple aircraft have been either damaged or destroyed.

The timing of the supposed attack is also interesting, as few hours later Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky said that the war will end after Ukraine gets back all occupied territories, including Crimea. Yet Ukraine still denied any responsibility for the explosions. Meanwhile, Russian nationals on vacation in Crimea are now being evacuated, according to Russian officials.

About Stefano D’Urso
Stefano D’Urso is a freelance journalist and contributor to TheAviationist based in Lecce, Italy. A graduate in Industral Engineering he’s also studying to achieve a Master Degree in Aerospace Engineering. Electronic Warfare, Loitering Munitions and OSINT techniques applied to the world of military operations and current conflicts are among his areas of expertise.

Rounding up livestock with a century-series boxer

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In the mid-70s, the USAF was trying to find brand-new airspace to perform reduced level/high rate training. Existing paths were being crowded by uncontrolled development, victor respiratory tracts, airport terminal control areas, as well as a host of various other variables that were making the airspace over a smaller sized place.The Upper Peninsula(UP )of Michigan had actually captured somebody’s eye in the Pentagon as a location which was still on the side of the frontier and also abundant ground for such use. For whatever the factor, the National Guard Bureau down the hall was brought right into the principle, which consequently passed it off to the Michigan Air National Guard, given that it incorporated their airspace. At the time, I was your fundamental,”Guard Bum”with the 127th TFW

at Selfridge ANGB, looking for a task as an airline company pilot when no person was working with. The device was flying F-100s at the time as well as while formally being the Wing Navigation as well as Life Support Officer, I was basically the gopher for anything needed. With a summons to the five-sided framework in Washington, I was discussed the job available as well as educated that I was being provided a 6 month momentary professional placement of work to make it all take place. The UP is rather silent, yet is it remote sufficient for an F-100 at 200 feet? The very first job started by taking a seat with a sectional graph of the location and also attracting a 5 mile span around every town, community, as well as city. Following consisted of colleges, airport terminals, radio towers, limited airspace, state and also national forests, as well as anything else which might be identified as aside from a sparsely inhabited location. With what

stayed, as well as there showed up little of it, I tried to link a continual line of canine legs from a beginning indicate a target. The USAF was looking for 2 different courses, which provided a considerable obstacle. I was never ever right into challenges, yet quickly really felt that I was attempting to fit a round fix right into a square opening. The suggested perameters for use of 500 feet AGL as well as 420 knots groundspeed were yet home window clothing for the actual desired use of 200 feet,”

on the deck “ops. After lastly squeezing out 2 different passages backwards instructions, the proposition needed a detailed evaluation of the sound degrees sent out from the different boxer airplane that would certainly be flying the course, in addition to the toxins sent out at succeeding power degrees essential to maintain the desired 420-knot airspeed. Completely out of my aspect

, I leaned greatly upon the designers at Wright-Patterson AFB for the essential information to load this square. Next off … a thorough narrative defining the location to be flown over was needed in print type, defining topography below. A comprehensive and also reasonable summary of the location might just be accomplished by flying over it as well as unlike the designated tasking of the system, this was an empty check to go study the realty as required.

Provided an F-100D for this function and also without a wingman, I was alone and also unarmed. The trip strategy which I submitted offered specifics to time en course as well as gas aboard yet transmitting as unclear as,”VFR, Upper Peninsula, Michigan. “The only form of main USAF service was an intended refueling at KI Sawyer, which was a SAC base as well as previous consent needed. In peacetime, flying did not obtain any kind of far better than this, also if you flew”reconnaissance!”It was a best day for sight-seeing and also after overlooking the thumb of Michigan, I terminated IFR with Cleveland Center as well as pull down to fundamental clearance, over Lake Huron in the direction of the eastern idea of the UP. Time as well as range was important at this moment as navigating was only by dead numeration as well as the initial turn factor of the course lay simply west of the Canadian Border. This was throughout the elevation of

the Cold War and also in the days prior to the magic of GPS as well as relocating map screen. By pure opportunity, a Russian truck (trading with Canada)was steaming near alongside my track and also I essentially passed below their starboard bridge wing, to reveal the flag. Nearing the north coast, I brought up to a reputable elevation (clearance)as well as started to fly shape while I rumbled over the pencil line that had actually been made use of the graph. It was thought about very early springtime in a lot of components of the United States, right here the location showed up still grasped by winter season with a substantial lack of mankind– the single factor for me being below. F-100 vs. jeopardized bird: that wins? After investing much better than a week after that composing a travelogue, in army kind, it was time for the last and also most essential obstacle: a joint conference with United States Fish & & Wildlife as well as the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. It was an inescapable final thought that there was absolutely nothing concerning my discussion they would certainly be passionate around. Ought to I have the ability to leave without their objection, I might consider my check out a significant success.

After preliminary pleasantries, I was quickly wondered about on my expertise of the Kirtland Warbler, a tiny bird on the jeopardized varieties checklist which seasonally commutes in between Northern Michigan as well as the Bahamas. Being conservationists nevertheless, they described the bird by its Latin grammatic name of setophaga kirtandlii, which was something absolutely international to my vocabulary. While in their eyes, I currently showed up dumber than mud, there was no question in my mind that I was trying to connect with Klingons.

There was wonderful issue on their component, of the possibility for producing a stampeding impact upon wild animals by the transportation of a jet boxer at the recommended elevation as well as sound degree. I responded to that while at first shocking to both male as well as monster, it was exceptionally short as an occasion and also comparable to that of a thunderclap. While unexpected in incident, its period discontinued as rapidly as it was acknowledged.

After yet a short eye my musician quality graph discussion, an issue was promptly articulated concerning the 2nd leg of the course. A recognized hairless eagles’ nest lay within 3 miles of the attracted centerline. Continuing to the map area, which advised me of a secondary school gym, we strolled over to graphes of the UP in equipping feet, which stood for a range of almost one to one. As if the center of a quake, the area of subject nest was conveniently situated as well as graphically shown with different information illustrated regarding it as if a Surface to Air Missile website.

“We had an energetic nest below last summer season,” I was notified. “With 3 eaglets!”

I knew that I had a high regularity hearing loss from being around jet airplane, however instead of having actually missed out on something, I was all of a sudden uncertain of what I had actually simply listened to. “Three eaglets,” I wondered about, disbelieving that such a demographics took place. “How are you familiar with that?”

“Oh, we head out as well as count them each year,” was the laid-back action, as if it needs to be apparent.

“Really?” I reacted, reluctant to think that such analysis happened on a yearly basis which they had absolutely nothing far better to do with themselves. “Isn’t that instead hazardous– going up right into the top branches of a tree and also being assaulted by a mommy eagle at the same time?” I additionally wondered about.

“Oh no … we utilize a helicopter to count them.”

It went to this factor that I outraged as well as shed all restriction of being modest as well as contacting these gents with hat in hand. Right here these people were having a concern with the sound produced from a jet airplane a mile or more remote from such nesting, existing as well as preceded acknowledgment of what had actually happened, and also they were out floating concerning the cover of a woodland checking beaks in a nest while navigating around and also developing downdrafts of over 80 knots while doing so. If ever before there were a synthetic occasion to cause a losing the unborn baby in every little thing from bears to birds, this was it.

Bald eagle

Don’t tinker the hairless eagle. Having actually vented my spleen concerning their principle of accountancy, I was near specific with my separation that the whole task would certainly currently need to be junked. The probabilities of authorization from this camp were much less than attempting to blend oil with water, or communism with industrialism.

Remarkably a month later on, the DNR as well as Fish & & Wildlife reacted with a neutral feedback, articulating no argument to the proposition. Prior to last entry to USAF HQ for authorization as well as succeeding posting with the FAA nonetheless, both paths would certainly need a trip check being flown as a method tactical sortie, to validate its detailed borders.

Once more, I was handed the tricks to an airplane without concerns being requested the objective of making it all occur. Soon after departure, I terminated IFR and also continued by aesthetic pilotage to the beginning factor of the initial course at the north pointer of the thumb of Michigan. Soon after that, I take place to glimpse over the cover rail and also observe a whole area of land which was fenced and also being utilized for grazing by what I approximated to be over 500 head of livestock.

To lay to rest the hesitation concerning the stampeding of pets by jet sound, I determined to place the issue to the examination. Tugging the aircraft around for positioning, I fell to 200 feet (or someplace because location) as well as rose the power for a flow over the area at 400+ knots while involving the afterburner for additional result. As the ground spotted by in a blur, I suddenly brought up right into the upright at the back of the fencing line and also started a snap roll. Turning my head back over my left shoulder, I gazed back to where I had actually simply been.

The view I observed advised me of an old time western flick with a mass of buffaloes billing throughout an open level. Currently a tiny route of dirt was appreciable behind what seemed the whole herd, heck bent on going someplace en mass and also in marginal time. The preliminary idea of this whole crowd breaching a barbed cord fencing on the run left me with the vision of needing to consume bison burger for the remainder of my life as the outcome of problems sustained.

I feared the idea of what awaited me upon touchdown throughout the rest of the trip. The masked paint plan of the aircraft did not have enough stealth to conceal the criminal, and also being the single airplane flying from the armada that mid-day left no possibility of declaring virtue. I completely anticipated to be satisfied at the airplane by the wing leader upon touchdown as well as removed of my wings.

After quit cocking the throttle in the chocks and also sheepishly getting in trip procedures, I awaited the hammer to drop … which strangely never ever took place. Evidently the livestock were not so foolish regarding spike themselves upon a barbed cable fencing regardless of what the scare– be it from killers, lightning strikes, helicopters, or an F-100 pilot attacking the location.

Roland is a retired global airline company captain with over 32,000 hrs overall time. He is an ATP Airplane Single Engine Land, Multi-Engine Land & Sea, and also is type-rated on the A320, A330, CV240, CV340, CV440, DC-9, and also G-111(Grumman Albatross). He likewise holds a Commercial certification for Airplane Single Engine Sea, Glider, Rotorcraft Helicopter, and also is both a trip teacher as well as A&P technician. He flies a 2/3rd range Macchi M-5 flying watercraft.
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A 12-minute trip and also a major in-flight fire

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It was a really great late June day in 2002 in main North Carolina, where I belonged to a rising club at a personal landing field near Raleigh. I was additionally among the club’s tow pilots. I delighted in flying gliders, yet I actually appreciated the obstacles of flying the club tow aircraft, which I had actually been providing for a number of years.The landing strip path(18-36)led part is 2459 ft. x 40 ft., and also there is a much shorter parallel lawn path instantly nearby and also to eastern of the smooth path that is sometimes utilized for glider touchdowns and also antique airplane. The paths are sloped, with the high-end at the north end of the paths. For glider procedures, under light wind problems such as the day of the case, departures are typically made downhill on smooth path 18 as well as touchdowns are made uphill on smooth path 36. The premium overrun for smooth path 36 enjoys a ranch area that was grown in turf, as well as there is a brief turf overrun at the reduced end of the smooth path 18. All lawn paths as well as overruns had actually just recently been cut and also the yard as well as sidewalk problems were completely dry. Somebody needs to obtain those gliders up in the air. The club’s tow aircraft at the time was a 1964 Cessna 1964 150/150 with a climb-pitch propellor. After inspecting gas, as well as doing a preflight evaluation, the airplane seemed airworthy. I taxied cab to path 18, where a waiting glider was affixed to the towrope, as well as at about 1248 EDT, I removed with one notch of flaps, downhill on path 18 with the glider in tow. Winds were variable and also light, yet mainly from the southwest. The tow continued well as well as without case at the typical tow rate of regarding 65 miles per hour. There was solid lift the glider and also that day launched from the towrope concerning one as well as a half miles southeast of the landing field, at 2500 ft. AGL. I was monitoring time as well as elevation of tows utilizing a mobile GPS that was powered by the accessory electrical outlet. After the glider launched, a guideline high left turn was made back towards the landing field, carburetor warm was used, power was minimized to concerning 1900 rpm, and also complete flaps were used. I placed the airplane right into a left slip as well as came down at about 1600 fpm to go back to the airfield pattern to get the following glider, which was waiting on the limit of path 18.

Upon coming to the landing field, the towplane was still expensive to make a regular pattern access, so I elevated the flaps, switched off carburetor warm, raised throttle to 2500 rpm and also went across the landing field at midfield. At about 1000 feet AGL, I got in a left crosswind to start the pattern for an uphill touchdown on path 36. Throughout the crosswind leg, I discovered a smell in the airplane cabin that scented like warm plastic. Throughout access right into the left downwind leg for path 36, the plastic smell ended up being a lot more powerful. I shut off all aircraft-powered electric tools, consisting of the radio as well as transponder. I abbreviated my pattern a little as well as transformed left base early, as well as came down to concerning 900 ft. AGL, including 10 levels of flaps.

On downwind I inspected to see to it both gliders that were up were not in the touchdown pattern which nothing else airplane remained in the location of the landing strip. I did not switch off the master button during that time. I lowered the engine power evaluating the moment to regarding 1500 rpm. I do not remember whether I used carburetor warmth then, although I typically would have done so. While transforming onto left base for path 36 as well as including one more notch of flaps, bits of smoke were arising from behind the cockpit console on the traveler side, onward of where the doorless handwear cover box opening lay. There was no lining behind the handwear cover box opening, so the location to the back of the panel behind the opening showed up and also it was clear that there was a tiny electric fire establishing.

By the time the middle of the base leg for path 36 was gotten to, fires concerning 4-6″ in size showed up with the handwear cover box opening, although the fire was not shedding extremely then. Secs later on, acrid thick black smoke and also bigger fires were swiftly establishing from a factor beside the within the starboard outside skin of the aircraft concerning 4-6″ onward of the handwear cover box opening. Abbreviating my touchdown pattern even more by transforming straight towards the limit of 36, power was raised to raise airspeed. While transforming onto last for path 36, the fires ran out the glovebox as well as right into the appropriate side of the cabin seating location, melting extremely intensely and also a lot bigger.

Fire aftermath

That’s … not typical. The thick black smoke was raising in quantity as well as filling up the cabin, making it hard to see as well as take a breath. I enhanced flaps to complete 40 levels and also readjusted the throttle to complete power to accelerate the airplane regardless of the flaps– I was not worried concerning damages to the airplane then. I after that placed the airplane right into a nose-down difficult left slip to shed elevation faster as well as place the fires on the adverse stress side of the airplane. Because of the thickness of the smoke in the cabin, it was not feasible to see whether the fire was additionally outside the airplane or simply within, yet as a result of the strength and also warmth of the fire, the light weight aluminum airplane skin might likewise have actually gotten on fire.

It was ending up being annoying and also significantly tough to take a breath, so I opened up the pilot side home window to confess fresh air. Opening up the home window no question included some oxygen to the fire, yet it allowed me to take a breath as well as removed a few of the smoke from the cabin, making it less complicated to see out of the windscreen.

Nearing the path limit, it was feasible to see all right with the smoke to observe that the angle of descent was as well high which the nose of the airplane required to be increased or I would certainly collapse on the technique end of the path. I increased the nose as well as since I was after that over the path limit, I all at once drew power to still. As I did this, the airplane swelled somewhat because of my airspeed. Minimized exposure from smoke in the airplane cabin made it tough to correctly evaluate the mindset and also elevation of the airplane. The cabin contained thick black smoke then, and also breathing was tough regardless of the open home window. Fires were likewise raising in the cabin of the airplane from under the appropriate side of the cockpit console and also via the handwear cover box opening on the guest side.

In a small crab in ground result to reduce the airplane down at touch-down, I did not recognize exactly how quick I was taking a trip yet did not wish to jeopardize the glider and also team waiting on pick-up on the limit of path 18. The airplane was still in a minor crab as well as taking a trip faster than regular for touchdown, so when it touched down, the airplane swerved ideal and also left the smooth path onto the surrounding identical lawn path instantly to the eastern of 36. The airplane was taking a trip rather rapid (the airspeed indication was not noticeable because of smoke), however the rate was swiftly slowing down as a result of complete flaps as well as no power. I had the ability to manage the airplane back to the left as well as onto the sidewalk with left tail as well as used complete brakes as soon as on the sidewalk.

The airplane rate slowed down even more, as well as I left the path under complete control onto the lawn auto parking ramp location simply to the west side of 36 as well as involved a period. Holding my breath to prevent choking on the thick black smoke that had actually filled up the cabin, I shut off the mix, the master button and also the ignition trick by feeling as opposed to view. I opened up the left door, leaned out as well as breathed of fresh air while unlocking my harness and after that left the airplane. The airplane engine had actually stopped running when I transformed the ignition turn off, and also the prop was not transforming when I left the airplane.

After getting out of the airplane, I held my breath, as well as gotten to in as well as got my battery-powered mobile GPS device and after that relocated quickly far from the airplane to attempt to remove my lungs with some fresh air while much sufficient from the airplane to be untouched. I called out to the waiting glider team that there was a fire onboard the tow aircraft as well as I went to obtain the neighboring water pipe. Already, the smoke had actually relied on a dark grey shade as well as was putting out of the open cabin windows and door, covering the outside of the airplane ahead of the wings. The principal of the neighborhood fire division, that went to the airfield maintenance his very own airplane, reacted quickly with 2 15 pound. ABC chemical fire extinguishers and also called the fire division utilizing his fire division boom box. My GPS suggested that the complete period of the trip was simply under 12 mins.

Hole in 150

The plane made it back, however hardly. The principal cleared one extinguisher right into the cabin with the open pilot side door, yet the fire was still shedding with thick smoke and also a little turf fire had actually established under the airplane from shedding particles that was dropping from the airplane. We drew the airplane around 20 feet to the back making use of the towrope that was still connected to the tow hook and also we utilized the pipe from the airport terminal club to produce the yard fire. The regional Fire Department showed up soon in a pumper vehicle while the principal and also the various other participants of the skyrocketing club were utilizing the 2nd fire extinguisher to remain to try to produce the fire. The fire had actually eased off yet was still shedding. The fire division finished snuffing out the fire with a huge quantity of water as well as treated me with oxygen for smoke breathing.

The cabin of the airplane was ruined by the fire, consisting of the cockpit console, as well as at the factor of ignition the fire shed an eight-inch size opening in the best side of the body onward of the cockpit console (and also simply ahead of the gas line, which boils down in the appropriate windscreen article to the engine from the wing gas container). Indoor plastics, consisting of avionics and also textile, were either thawed or charred. Repaint on the outside left side of the body behind the firewall software was blistered and also tarnished because of warmth as well as smoke. All home windows in the airplane were thawed, tarnished and also crazed from warmth, smoke as well as fires. We connected the airplane down around fifty feet from the melt website as well as safeguarded it for examination by the FAA as well as NTSB.

What was the reason? The battery had actually been relocated at that time to the back of the airplane to keep weight and also equilibrium since of the hefty bigger engine installment for usage as a towplane. The cord that captured on fire was a wire to the accessory plug which bypassed the master button. The GPS device most likely overwhelmed the circuit. There is currently an advertisement that needs the accessory plug on 150s to be or have a fuse detached.

After the fire, a check of the NTSB data source for basic aeronautics in-flight cabin fires revealed that of the about 36,000 basic aeronautics mishaps as well as occurrences in the data source during that time, there were just 36 in-flight cabin fires provided, consisting of mine. Of the 36, roughly half finished in a minimum of one casualty as well as roughly fifty percent of the various other 50% finished in small or significant injury. Aside from a little singed hair on my appropriate arm and also some smoke breathing, my event remained in the 25% without any injury or fatality.

The verdict from the stats is that the chances of having an in-flight cabin fire as a whole air travel airplane are little, yet if one does take place the chances of being harmed or eliminated are rather high. Lessons picked up from this occurrence consist of that it is essential not to stress in an emergency situation which one needs to constantly lug a fire extinguisher when flying also little airplane.

Christopher”Chris “McClure has actually been flying for nearly 40 years and also has a Commercial Pilot certification– Airplane Single Engine Land, Airplane Single Engine Sea, Glider, Instrument Airplane, as well as an Advanced Ground Instructor certification. He presently has roughly 2500 hrs of Pilot in Command time with 1420 hrs of tailwheel PIC time as well as is a significant in the Civil Air Patrol. Chris presently possesses 2 aircrafts: a 2004 Aviat Husky A1-B and also a 1946 Piper J-3C-65. He was a policeman in the United States Army Special Forces, where I offered in Vietnam and also was granted a Bronze Star, a Combat Infantry Badge, and also a Senior Parachute Badge. He currently resides in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he is a consulting engineer.
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EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2022 Ready to Roll

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At Oshkosh, over by the gift shop, there’s an “airplanes for sale” bulletin board, the real, old-fashioned kind of stick-pin bulletin board. Every year, we stop by, sometimes more than once, to look at the planes. We’re never sure what we’re looking for, but we always find plenty of weird and wonderful winged creations to whet our appetites (as if we needed it) for getting into the air. And we can’t help but think about the planes there. Whose are they? Did the owner at some point in the past 50 years find their plane on this very same bulletin board, maybe back when flared pants and mutton chop sideburns were in vogue, when the official attire of any true EAA’er was that famous blue windbreaker with patches from fly-ins past?

There are so many little details about the Oshkosh AirVenture fly-in, the upper Midwestern American summer gathering of pilots and other aviation enthusiasts, that can immediately give one a sense of place. The morning revelry, the smell of burgers on the open flame wafting out toward the flight line, the glint of sun on a P-47 on that walk to the North 40 showers before most of the people making up this weeklong city have arisen. (That glint from the same sun seven decades back when this plane was in Burma waiting to go into battle.) 

Let’s establish that no one can see all of the show. There’s too much. Way too much. So you’ve got to pick your spots, keep your eyes ready to dart skyward at the sound of a Merlin or the roar of a big Pratt turbofan. 

And as the week marches on (if you’re lucky enough to be there for the whole event), the show imparts to every attendee a different set of experiences, different from last year’s and from the next event, too. So you let it soak in, because there is literally too much to take in. 

This year’s OSH gathering will have lots of pilots, some like you; interesting news developments; and no end of amazing planes, many of which fill the afternoon sky with salutes to aviation’s remarkable past and some of which are harbingers of its great future. We can’t wait for every single bit of it—the friends, the stories, the losses and the promise of it all. 

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And EAA’s excellent promotion of the event, which stars and wings will be at this year’s event, all of it is worthy and fascinating. But you know what? We’ll be there regardless, this year and every year. 

The photography that makes up this gallery is courtesy of those friends at EAA, whose many photographers spread across the grounds during the week of the show, capturing brilliantly those many things that we might have missed last year but swear that we won’t…this year. 

 

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U.S. E-4B ‘Doomsday’ Plane Makes Airshow Debut Outside The U.S. at RIAT

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E-4B RIAT
The E-4B is one of the highlights of this year’s RIAT at RAF Fairford. (Image credit: RIAT)

Royal International Air Tattoo in the UK, marks the first airshow appearance of a U.S. Air Force E-4B Nightwatch, outside the U.S.

The RIAT (Royal International Air Tattoo), underway at RAF Faiford, UK, is, at least in Europe, the real highlight of the airshow season, attracting, as usual, several interesting aircraft types from all over the world. Making its first appearance at RIAT 22, the first ever at an airshow outside the U.S., is this year a very rare assets, the U.S. Air Force E-4B Nightwatch.

The E-4B is a modified B747-200 that serves as National Airborne Operations Center (NAOC) providing a flying command, control and communications center to direct nuclear (and conventional) forces, by receiving, verifying and relaying EAM (Emergency Action Messages). Four E-4B are in service with the U.S. Air Force and operated by the Air Force Global Strike Command out of Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. One aircraft is usually airborne every 12 hours, with another one ready for departure with a 5-minute notice.
The one on static display at RIAT 22, registration 73-1676, arrived in the afternoon on Jul. 15, 2022 as GORDO 01. The aircraft could be tracked online on flight tracking websites as it did a holding pattern and then a low pass before coming back to landing.

The E-4B, designed to carry the U.S. SecDef as well as other U.S. top officials and always supporting Air Force One’s trips abroad, is specifically designed to keep American decision makers alive in case of nuclear wars, crisis, zombie invasions or alien attacks. Therefore, it has to be able to fly through any EMP (electromagnetic pulse) with unharmed systems. That’s why this highly-modified Boeing 747 does not feature modern glass cockpit but old fashioned, analogue-style avionics are more resilient to EMPs.

The E-4B is protected against the effects of electromagnetic pulse and has an electrical system designed to support advanced electronics and a wide variety of communications equipment. An advanced satellite communications system provides worldwide communication for senior leaders through the airborne operations center. Other improvements include nuclear and thermal effects shielding, acoustic control, an improved technical control facility and an upgraded air-conditioning system for cooling electrical components.

According to the U.S. Air Force fact sheet, the Nightwatch aircraft’s main deck is divided into six functional areas: a command work area, conference room, briefing room, an operations team work area, communications area and rest area. An E-4B may include seating for up to 112 people, including a joint-service operations team, Air Force flight crew, maintenance and security component, communications team and selected augmentees.

The following clip shows the arrival of the “Doomsday” plane in 4K.



About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.

AirVenture Almost Here; New Wings at Van’s; And a New Look for the CAP

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With Oshkosh looming—it starts on Monday, July 25—the week in news has been slow, GA-wise, as plane makers and movers and shakers usually hold on to their announcements until the festivities get underway. There was one big exception to this rule, as Van’s Aircraft created the year’s funniest release in showing the world its new high-wing plane after spy photos let the cat out of the bag.

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