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Vickers Valiant
The Vickers-Armstrongs VALIANT was a British four-jet high-altitude bomber , once part of the Royal Air Force 's V bomber nuclear force in the 1950s and 1960s. It was developed by Vickers in response to Specification B.35/46 issued by the Air Ministry for a nuclear-armed jet-powered bomber. The Valiant was the first of the V bombers to become operational, and was followed by the Handley Page Victor and the Avro Vulcan ; it was noticeably less advanced than its counterparts. The Valiant has the distinction of being the only V bomber to have dropped live nuclear weapons. As developed, the Valiant was intended for operations as a high-altitude strategic bomber . During the late 1950s, in response to rapid advances in surface-to-air missile (SAM) technology, the Valiant fleet switched to flying a low-level mission profile to perform the strike mission. Beyond the nuclear deterrence role, the Valiant was also used by the RAF for other purposes, a number were converted to perform various support roles such as aerial refuelling tankers and aerial reconnaissance aircraft. Valiants were used for conventional bombing missions over Egypt
Egypt
for Operation Musketeer during the Suez Crisis of 1956
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Vickers 131 Valiant
The VICKERS TYPE 131 VALIANT was a British general-purpose biplane produced by Vickers in 1927, with the intention of replacing the Royal Air Force
Royal Air Force
's Airco DH.9As , but was unsuccessful, with only a single example built, which was sold to Chile. CONTENTS * 1 Development and design * 2 Operational history * 3 Operators * 4 Specifications (Type 131 Valiant) * 5 See also * 6 References * 6.1 Notes * 6.2 Bibliography DEVELOPMENT AND DESIGNIn 1926, based on experience with the wooden-winged Vickers Vixen biplane, where the wings proved vulnerable to extremes of temperature and humidity, designed a set of metal wings for the Vixen, with which it became the Vickers Vivid , and in parallel, designed an all-metal general purpose biplane, the Vickers Type 131, hoping to replace the DH.9A in that role. In 1927, the British Air Ministry issued Specification 26/27 for a DH.9A replacement which, to save money, had to use as many components of the DH.9A as possible because the RAF held large stocks of DH.9A spares. Vickers submitted the Type 131 design to the Ministry but, as it did not make use of the required DH9A components, did not receive a contract for a prototype. However Vickers decided to build a single prototype as a private venture for evaluation against the specification
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Strategic Bomber
A STRATEGIC BOMBER is a medium to long range penetration bomber designed to drop large amounts of air-to-ground weaponry onto a distant target for the purposes of debilitating the enemy 's capacity to wage war . Unlike tactical bombers , penetrators , fighter-bombers , and attack aircraft , which are used in air interdiction operations to attack enemy combatants and military equipment , strategic bombers are designed to fly into enemy territory to destroy strategic targets (e.g., infrastructure , logistics , military installations , factories and cities ). In addition to strategic bombing , strategic bombers can be used for tactical missions . There are currently three countries that operate strategic bombers: the United States
United States
, Russia
Russia
, and China . The modern strategic bomber role appeared after strategic bombing was widely employed , and atomic bombs were first used in combat during World War
War
II . Nuclear strike missions (i.e., delivering nuclear -armed missiles or bombs ) can potentially be carried out by most modern fighter-bombers and strike fighters , even at intercontinental range , with the use of AERIAL REFUELING , so any nation possessing this combination of equipment and techniques theoretically has such capability
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Aerial Refueling
AERIAL REFUELING, also referred to as AIR REFUELING, IN-FLIGHT REFUELING (IFR), AIR-TO-AIR REFUELING (AAR), and TANKING, is the process of transferring aviation fuel from one military aircraft (the tanker ) to another (the receiver) during flight. The two main refueling systems are probe-and-drogue, which is simpler to adapt to existing aircraft, and the flying boom, which offers faster fuel transfer, but requires a dedicated boom operator station. The procedure allows the receiving aircraft to remain airborne longer, extending its range or loiter time on station. A series of air refuelings can give range limited only by crew fatigue and engineering factors such as engine oil consumption. Because the receiver aircraft can be topped up with extra fuel in the air, air refueling can allow a takeoff with a greater payload which could be weapons, cargo, or personnel: the maximum takeoff weight is maintained by carrying less fuel and topping up once airborne. Alternatively, a shorter take-off roll can be achieved because take-off can be at a lighter weight before refueling once airborne. Aerial refueling has also been considered as a means to reduce fuel consumption on long-distance flights greater than 3,000 nautical miles (5,600 km; 3,500 mi). Potential fuel savings in the range of 35-40% have been estimated for long haul flights (including the fuel used during the tanker missions)
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Vickers-Armstrongs
For the modern day New Zealand aircraft company see: Vickers
Vickers
Aircraft Company For other companies using the "Vickers" name, see Vickers
Vickers
. Vickers-Armstrongs
Vickers-Armstrongs
Limited FATE Assets split and majority nationalised SUCCESSOR Vickers
Vickers
plc British Aircraft Corporation (est.1960) British Shipbuilders British Steel Corporation FOUNDED 1927 DEFUNCT 1977 HEADQUARTERS Vickers
Vickers
House , Westminster , London PARENT Vickers
Vickers
Limited Armstrong Whitworth
Armstrong Whitworth
SUBSIDIARIES Metropolitan- Vickers
Vickers
Canadian Vickers
Vickers
Whitehead & Company John Brown & Company Sociedad Española de Construcción Naval Supermarine Aviation Works (est.1928) VICKERS-ARMSTRONGS LIMITED was a British engineering conglomerate formed by the merger of the assets of Vickers
Vickers
Limited and Sir W G Armstrong Whitworth
Armstrong Whitworth
Metro Cammell. In 1935, before rearmament began, Vickers-Armstrongs
Vickers-Armstrongs
was the third-largest manufacturing employer in Britain, behind Unilever
Unilever
and ICI
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George Edwards (aviation)
SIR GEORGE ROBERT FREEMAN EDWARDS OM CBE FRS DL (9 July 1908 – 2 March 2003), was a British aircraft designer and industrialist . CONTENTS * 1 Early life * 2 Career * 2.1 Vickers * 2.2 BAC * 3 Personal life * 4 References * 5 External links EARLY LIFEEdwards was born in Highams Park , north London, England. He attended Walthamstow
Walthamstow
Technical Institute Engineering and Trade School which in 1970 became part of North East London Polytechnic (which later became the University of East London ). This introduced him to engineering and engineering design course at the University of London
University of London
. CAREER Vickers VC-10 tanker in September 2005 VICKERSBeginning as a design draughtsman in 1935, he was promoted in 1940 to Experimental Department Manager and in 1945 he became the Chief Designer of the Vickers-Armstrongs
Vickers-Armstrongs
team that produced the Viking airliner, Valetta military transport, Varsity trainer, Viscount airliners and Valiant strategic bomber. He later became managing director of the company, supervising the development of the Vanguard , VC10 and (post-merger) BAC TSR-2
BAC TSR-2
strike bomber. He was knighted in 1957. He was President of the Royal Aeronautical Society in 1957-58
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1951 In Aviation
This is a list of aviation -related events from 1951: CONTENTS* 1 Events * 1.1 January * 1.2 February * 1.3 March * 1.4 April * 1.5 May * 1.6 June * 1.7 July * 1.8 August * 1.9 September * 1.10 October * 1.11 November * 1.12 December * 2 First flights * 2.1 January * 2.2 February * 2.3 March * 2.4 April * 2.5 May * 2.6 June * 2.7 July * 2.8 August * 2.9 September * 2.10 October * 2.11 November * 2.12 December * 3 Entered service * 3.1 January * 3.2 February * 3.3 May * 3.4 June * 3.5 July * 3.6 August * 3.7 October * 3.8 December * 4 Retirements * 5 References EVENTS * Three aerial refueling points are installed on a modified United States Air Force B-29 Superfortress , making it the world's first triple-point aerial tanker. During trials, it keeps six Royal Air Force Gloster Meteor F 8 fighters continuously aloft simultaneously for four hours at a time. * President Harry S Truman presents the Collier Trophy to the United States Coast Guard for its development of the helicopter . * With no aircraft left on order and no prospects for new orders, the Curtiss-Wright Corporation closes down its Aeroplane Division and sells all of its aircraft designs, projects, prototypes, and factories to North American Aviation
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Royal Air Force
The ROYAL AIR FORCE (RAF) is the United Kingdom's aerial warfare force . Formed towards the end of the First World War
First World War
on 1 April 1918, it is the oldest independent air force in the world. Following victory over the Central Powers
Central Powers
in 1918 the RAF emerged as, at the time, the largest air force in the world. Since its formation, the RAF has taken a significant role in British military history , in particular, playing a large part in the Second World War
Second World War
where it fought its most famous campaign, the Battle of Britain
Battle of Britain
. The RAF's mission is to support the objectives of the British Ministry of Defence (MoD), which are to "provide the capabilities needed: to ensure the security and defence of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
and overseas territories, including against terrorism; to support the Government’s foreign policy objectives particularly in promoting international peace and security". The RAF describe its mission statement as "... An _agile_, _adaptable_ and _capable_ Air Force that, person for person, is second to none, and that makes a decisive air power contribution in support of the UK Defence Mission". The mission statement is supported by the RAF's definition of air power , which guides its strategy
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United Kingdom
The UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND, commonly known as the UNITED KINGDOM (UK) or BRITAIN, is a sovereign country in western Europe. Lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland , the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
includes the island of Great Britain
Great Britain
, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland
Ireland
and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland
is the only part of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
that shares a land border with another sovereign state‍—‌the Republic of Ireland
Ireland
. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean
Atlantic Ocean
, with the North Sea to its east, the English Channel to its south and the Celtic Sea to its south-south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world . The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain
Great Britain
and Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi), the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world and the 11th-largest in Europe
Europe
. It is also the 21st-most populous country , with an estimated 65.1 million inhabitants
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Bomber
A BOMBER is a combat aircraft designed to attack ground and sea targets by dropping air-to-ground weaponry , firing torpedoes or deploying air-launched cruise missiles . CONTENTS* 1 Classification * 1.1 Strategic * 1.2 Tactical * 2 History * 2.1 The first bombers * 2.2 Strategic bombing * 2.3 World War II * 2.4 Cold War * 2.5 Modern era * 3 See also * 4 References * 5 External links CLASSIFICATION A Russian Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bomber. STRATEGIC Further information: Carpet bombing and Strategic bomber Strategic bombing is done by heavy bombers primarily designed for long-range bombing missions against strategic targets such as supply bases, bridges, factories, shipyards, and cities themselves, in order to diminish the enemy's ability to wage war by limiting access to resources through crippling infrastructure or reducing industrial output. Current examples include the strategic nuclear-armed strategic bombers : B-2 Spirit , B-52 Stratofortress , Tupolev Tu-95 'Bear', Tupolev Tu-22M 'Backfire'; historically notable examples are the: Gotha G.IV , Avro Lancaster , Heinkel He-111 , Junkers Ju 88 , Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress , Consolidated B-24 Liberator , Boeing B-29 Superfortress , and Tupolev Tu-16 'Badger'
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V Bomber
The term V BOMBER was used for the Royal Air Force
Royal Air Force
(RAF) aircraft during the 1950s and 1960s that composed the United Kingdom\'s strategic nuclear strike force known officially as the V-FORCE or BOMBER COMMAND MAIN FORCE. The strategic bombers , whose names all started with the letter "V" and which were known collectively as the _V-class_, included the Vickers VALIANT (first flew 1951, entered service 1955), Avro
Avro
VULCAN (first flew 1952, in service 1956) and Handley Page VICTOR (first flew 1952, in service 1958). The V-Bomber force reached its peak in June 1964, with 50 Valiants, 70 Vulcans and 39 Victors in service. When it became clear that Soviet surface-to-air missiles like the S-75 Dvina could successfully bring down high flying aircraft, the V bomber force changed to low-level attack methods. The Valiants were removed from service after problems with fatigue in their wings became apparent; a planned low-level variant of the Valiant did not progress beyond the prototype. Additionally, standoff weapons were introduced, starting with the Blue Steel (missile) and then planning to move to the much longer-ranged GAM-87 Skybolt air-launched ballistic missile . When the US cancelled Skybolt the survivability of the V-fleet was highly questionable
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Air Ministry Specification
This is a partial list of the British Air Ministry
Air Ministry
(AM) specifications for aircraft . A specification stemmed from an Operational Requirement , abbreviated "OR", describing what the aircraft would be used for. This in turn led to the specification itself, e.g. a two-engined fighter with 4 machine guns. So for example, OR.40 for a heavy bomber led to Specification B.12/36. Aircraft
Aircraft
manufacturers would be invited to present design proposals to the Ministry, following which prototypes of one or more of the proposals might be ordered for evaluation. On very rare occasions, a manufacturer would design and build an aircraft using their own money as a "Private Venture" (PV). This would then be offered to the Ministry for evaluation. If the aircraft generated interest in the Ministry or RAF due to performance or some other combination of features then the Ministry might well issue a specification based on the Private Venture aircraft. The system of producing aircraft to a specification ran from 1920 to 1949 during which the Air Ministry
Air Ministry
was replaced by first the Ministry of Aircraft
Aircraft
Production (MAP) and then the Ministry of Supply (MoS). The system was applied to commercial aircraft as well, two being the de Havilland Comet and Vickers Viscount
Vickers Viscount
. During the period, over 800 specifications were issued
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Air Ministry
The AIR MINISTRY was a department of the Government of the United Kingdom with the responsibility of managing the affairs of the Royal Air Force , that existed from 1918 to 1964. It was under the political authority of the Secretary of State for Air . CONTENTS* 1 Organisations before the Air Ministry
Air Ministry
* 1.1 The Air Committee * 1.2 The Joint War Air Committee * 1.2.1 Membership * 1.3 The Air Board * 1.3.1 The first Air Board * 1.3.2 The second Air Board * 2 Establishment of the Air Ministry
Air Ministry
* 3 History – 1920s * 4 Activities * 4.1 Aircraft production * 4.2 Weather Forecasting * 4.3 World War II technology * 5 Abolition * 6 See also * 7 External links * 8 References ORGANISATIONS BEFORE THE AIR MINISTRYTHE AIR COMMITTEEOn 13 April 1912, less than two weeks after the creation of the Royal Flying Corps (which initially consisted of both a naval and a military wing), an Air Committee was established to act as an intermediary between the Admiralty
Admiralty
and the War Office in matters relating to aviation. The new Air Committee was composed of representatives of the two war ministries, and although it could make recommendations, it lacked executive authority
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Nuclear Weapon
A NUCLEAR WEAPON is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions , either fission (fission bomb ) or from a combination of fission and fusion reactions (thermonuclear bomb ). Both bomb types release large quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter. The first test of a fission ("atomic") bomb released an amount of energy approximately equal to 20,000 tons of TNT (84 TJ ). The first thermonuclear ("hydrogen") bomb test released energy approximately equal to 10 million tons of TNT (42 PJ). A thermonuclear weapon weighing little more than 2,400 pounds (1,100 kg) can release energy equal to more than 1.2 million tons of TNT (5.0 PJ). A nuclear device no larger than traditional bombs can devastate an entire city by blast, fire, and radiation . Since they are weapons of mass destruction , the proliferation of nuclear weapons is a focus of international relations policy. Nuclear weapons have been used twice in war , both times by the United States
United States
against Japan
Japan
near the end of World War II
World War II
. On August 6, 1945, the U.S. Army Air Forces detonated a uranium gun-type fission bomb nicknamed " Little Boy
Little Boy
" over the Japanese city of Hiroshima
Hiroshima
; three days later, on August 9, the