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GENERAL Estimate within 3 Gs the greatest number of Gs that anyone has volunteered to endure. From reader Mike Piccola: Who invented the seaplane? A number of old airplanes such as the 1909 Deperdussin monoplane had two curved, wooden skids called pitching forks sticking out ahead of the main landing gear.

GENERAL

  1. Estimate within 3 Gs the greatest number of Gs that anyone has volunteered to endure.
  2. From reader Mike Piccola: Who invented the seaplane?
  3. A number of old airplanes such as the 1909 Deperdussin monoplane had two curved, wooden skids called pitching forks sticking out ahead of the main landing gear. (See photo.) What was their primary purpose?
  4. From reader John Schmidt: The Norden bombsight was made famous during World War II. What was the Mark Twain bombsight?
  5. From reader Thomas Kallos: During World War II, why were some aircraft known as Judas goats?
  6. From reader J.C. Blake: In the morning of a given day, a pilot makes 3 takeoffs and landings to a full stop. Why must he make 3 more takeoffs and landings in the same airplane before carrying passengers the next day? (This does not involve night currency.)
  7. What was the primary reason that Chuck Yeager was not chosen to be one of the first astronauts?
  8. What is the difference between a whifferdill and an octaflugeron?

TRUE OR FALSE

  1. From reader John Tiller: Two aircraft, an airplane and a helicopter, are approaching each other at right angles. The aircraft on the other’s right has right-of-way.
  2. From reader Rick Ray: In the European and Mediterranean Theaters of Operation during World War II, more Boeing B–17 Flying Fortresses and Consolidated B–24 Liberators were shot down by anti-aircraft fire than by enemy fighters.
  3. There was only one United States Air Force pilot to become an ace during the Vietnam War.

MULTIPLE CHOICE

  1. Speaking about G loads (question #1), the highest G load known to have been survived is estimated to have been
    1. 88 Gs.
    2. 118 Gs.
    3. 148 Gs.
    4. 178 Gs.
  2. The foggiest location in the conterminous United States is in
    1. Maine.
    2. Massachusetts.
    3. Oregon.
    4. Washington.
  3. From reader Richard Wilsher: Which of the following trios represents the world’s three oldest airlines still operating under their original names?
    1. Air France, Delta, Aerolineas Argentina
    2. Cathay Pacific, Sabena, Swissair
    3. KLM, Avianca, Qantas
    4. United, Aeroflot, British Airways

TEST PILOT ANSWERS

  1. Colonel John Stapp was subjected to 46.2 Gs on a rocket sled during a research program in 1954. Although sustaining numerous injuries, he survived.
  2. Frenchman Henri Fabre took off from and landed on Etang de Berre (a body of water west of Marseilles) several times in an airplane of his design on March 28, 1910.
  3. Pitching forks prevented the aircraft from nosing over when landing on soft ground, a common hazard in the early days.
  4. The inexpensive Mark Twain bombsight replaced the heavy and ineffective (below 4,000 feet) Norden bombsight on the B–25s used by Doolittle’s Tokyo Raiders to preclude the possibility of the top-secret Norden from being captured by the Japanese. The “Twain” was made in Elmira, New York, where Mark Twain once lived.
  5. A Judas goat is a goat trained to herd animals. An aircraft so named was brightly painted, flew over a specific location, and assembled (herded) large formations of aircraft prior to their departure on bombing raids.
  6. The pilot’s airplane was converted from floats to wheels (or vice-versa) during the interim and currency is required for each class of aircraft, seaplane and landplane.
  7. Yeager lacked a formal education.
  8. Both are colloquialisms from early aviation. A whifferdill (turn) is any of several aerobatic methods of course reversal involving vertical and horizontal motion. An octaflugeron is any odd and aimless maneuver.
  9. False. Regulations do not address this situation. Common sense, however, suggests that the aircraft on the other’s right should be given right-of-way.
  10. True. 3,752 bombers were downed by flak, 3,299 by enemy fighters, and 1,263 by “other causes,” a total of 8,314 downed bombers.
  11. True. Brigadier General R. Stephen “Steve” Ritchie downed 5 MiG-21s using McDonnell-Douglas F–4D and E Phantoms.
  12. (d) British F1 race driver David Purley crashed into a wall because of a jammed accelerator and came to a complete stop from 107 mph in only 26 inches. He continued racing.
  13. (a) Libby Island near Machiasport, Maine averages 1,554 hours of fog per year.
  14. (c) KLM (Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij) was founded in October, 1919, Avianca in December, 1919, and Qantas in November, 1920.

Visit the author’s Web site ( www.barryschiff.com).

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