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Old 24th Aug 2010, 21:09
  #99 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: France
Posts: 2,319
Originally Posted by Nick Thomas View Post
As Concorde was in reality the first and only successful SST; a lot of useful information must have been gained during the flight testing phase. Were there any plans to incorporate any updates/modifications based on leasons learnt into later production models(if there of course had been more orders)?
Rather than me waffling and doing cut-and-paste, just look here :
Concorde "B"
Concorde '217' would have been the 'prototype' for the 'B' version. Sadly it never happened.
Whilst typing the above I was reminded of something I read many years ago; that MI6 managed to pass slightly doctored "blueprints" to the Russians and that was the reason that "Concordski" was such a failure. I have always assumed that this was an "urban myth".
Like all urban myths, there's some truth in that.
Yes, there was some industrial espionage, and a Russian or two was arrested with microfilms of blueprints and a few components, in the best James Bond style (this was in France, BTW...).

Some "duff gen" may have been passed as well... although the main reason the Concordski failed was that they didn't really get some of the vital stuff sorted, with the subtlety of the wing shape and the intake controls being only a few of the examples.

To my mind, the best story (urban legend or not) was that a Russian got caught scraping tyre deposits off the runway after a few accelerate/stop tests. The sample was duly sent to Russia, mixed with chewing gum and a few other ingredients, and a certain amount of time is reputed to have been wasted tryng to reproduce the 'formula".....

Legend also has it, that the Russians at one point quite seriously inquired if they could buy the license to the intake control system.
Since at the time it would still have had quite significant military use as well, the answer was a very firm "njet" !

ChristiaanJ is offline