Monday, 24 October 2011

Leduc 0.22

Pull the ejector seat release and get sucked straight into the intake.
Learn how the pigeons live.
I found this on Dark Roasted Blend, who'd posted it for the the joy of it.  You have to love the Leduc 0.22; not so much an aircraft as a ramjet with a cockpit stuck inside it.


Cthel said...

I could be worse - with a ram-jet, there is at least a theoretical chance that you'd make it through intact (since there are no whirling turbines of death).

If you want real scary, check out the test beds for the infamous Coleoptere - nothing says "safe" like sitting (in a normal, non-ejecting seat) on the air intake to an upturned jet engine trying to see if you can balance it in mid air on just the jet eflux

Sergej said...

It's a .223 Remington cartridge.

eon said...

There was an earlier subsonic version, the 021, with a more bulbous fuselage, as well. In both cases, the pilot was initially "seated" in a position very like the ball-turret gunner in a B-17; later, the 021 was modified for prone-pilot research.

The 022 was supposed to be the prototype of a high-supersonic point-defense interceptor fighter. What finally killed the project was the inability of the French Air Force to come up with a weapon system that could practically be fired from it. Missiles could not be carried externally due to aeroelastic forces (wing flutter and longitudinal flexing due to flow disturbance).

And it tended to outrun 20mm and 30mm cannon shells, once they'd left the gun muzzles, since they were constantly decelerating, and the aircraft wasn't. (Shell casing disposal was another problem.)

The Leduc prototypes ended their days as high-speed research aircraft, which was really all they were practical for. As fighters, they were classic examples of platforms in search of a mission, having been built on the wrong assumptions. (Sort of like the Boulton-Paul Defiant, actually.)