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Old 25th Aug 2010, 13:39
  #111 (permalink)  
G SXTY

Supercharged PPRuNer
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Doon the watter, a million miles from the sandpit.
Posts: 1,159
I have been been on PPRuNe for 10 years now, and this is one of the most fascinating threads I've ever read. Some of the quotes give me goosebumps:

this fuel system really was a study in elegance.
On test flights however, the aircraft would routinely zoom climb to FL 630 . . . . . . the highest recorded Concorde altitude was on one of the French development aircraft, which achieved 68,000'.
The powerplant was as you say truly amazing. We had an, as yet, unmatched engine/intake combination, with a variable primary and secondary nozzles. The variable intake allowed supersonic operation with maximum pressure recovery, minimum aerodynamic drag, as well as extreme operational stability. (Extreme temperature shears, that would have caused surge/unstarts in military installations) were dealt with as a total non event). It's astonishing to believe, but at Mach 2 cruise, the intake provided approximately 63% of the powerplant thrust. It was controlled by the world's first airborne digital control system.
We never had a case of lost pressurisation, ever.
the aircraft handled beautifully through an 1100kt speed range.
And to think that she was designed in the 1960s by men with slide rules and drawing boards. How fitting that the most sophisticated airliner ever built was also by far and away the most beautiful.

Some years ago I had the privilege of meeting Capt. David Rowland (he of the ITVV video fame) at a GAPAN aptitude test day, and it is one of my cherished memories. I recall we spent about 30 seconds discussing my test results, and the remaining 10 minutes chatting about Concorde . . .

Please keep the memories coming guys as a humble Dash 8 driver, I will always be in awe of the technological marvel which was Concorde.
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