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(Reason Magazine)   How the B-52 will eventually be flown by the great great great great great great grandsons of the original pilots bombing the great great great great great great grandsons of the original targets   (reason.com) divider line 137
    More: Cool, B-52, carpet bombing, combat aircraft, anti-aircraft fire, stealth technology  
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8819 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 Sep 2013 at 7:01 AM (44 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-09-24 07:03:38 AM
But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.
 
2013-09-24 07:10:17 AM
Wait...why are bombing Russia and/or Vietnam?

I guess Russia has oil and natural gas, but what's Vietnam got?  Nước mắm ?
 
2013-09-24 07:11:13 AM

Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.


I think this might be why they normally dont greenlight articles until after a few Total Fark members say something that makes an ounce of sense.
 
2013-09-24 07:11:23 AM

Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.


don't worry qa, it is just a matter of time untill we can 3d print more B-52's, and those will be fully up to date...
 
2013-09-24 07:11:26 AM
Tin roof! ...Decimated!
 
2013-09-24 07:11:34 AM
Nice use of the cool tag.  War is really cool.  Blammo!  Kaboom!
 
2013-09-24 07:13:44 AM

Precision Boobery: Nice use of the cool tag.  War is really cool.  Blammo!  Kaboom!


BANG! BANG!  On the door!
 
2013-09-24 07:15:04 AM
I'm assuming that these 8-52 pilots will try not to Roam very far off target, lest they accidentally drop their payloads into the sea and wipe out the Rock Lobster.
 
2013-09-24 07:15:32 AM

Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.


th636.photobucket.com
Wait until the B-52s are used to colonize SPAAAAAAACE!
 
2013-09-24 07:16:17 AM

tetsoushima: Precision Boobery: Nice use of the cool tag.  War is really cool.  Blammo!  Kaboom!

BANG! BANG!  On the door!


Your tin roof shows signs of oxidation.
 
2013-09-24 07:17:10 AM

I sound fat: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

I think this might be why they normally dont greenlight articles until after a few Total Fark members say something that makes an ounce of sense.


How do you think I feel when someone says "computers got better" as some kind of argument about how we'll colonize the universe?

The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

Maul555: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

don't worry qa, it is just a matter of time untill we can 3d print more B-52's, and those will be fully up to date...


There we go! Finally someone who gets it!

Funny how on Fark we can mock everyone and everything, except each other. Then it gets very serious.
 
2013-09-24 07:18:10 AM
Somewhere in a mud hut, a baby is born...

/Tin roof: RUSTED.
 
2013-09-24 07:18:17 AM
B-52 PORN!

www.commonsensejunction.com
www.williamson-labs.com
www.demotivation.us
chivethebrigade.files.wordpress.com
 
2013-09-24 07:19:16 AM
The glacial way that military procurement is working these days, they will need until 2040 to field a replacement if they started working on it today. At least the BUFF is saving taxpayer money versus building a whole new series of aircraft. Not bad for a bomber basically designed in one night by a couple of engineers staying in a hotel.
 
2013-09-24 07:20:19 AM

Quantum Apostrophe: I sound fat: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

I think this might be why they normally dont greenlight articles until after a few Total Fark members say something that makes an ounce of sense.

How do you think I feel when someone says "computers got better" as some kind of argument about how we'll colonize the universe?

The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.


fc01.deviantart.net
 
2013-09-24 07:20:27 AM

Quantum Apostrophe: The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.


Peak manned aviation was the SR-71 Blackbird and Concorde.
 
2013-09-24 07:21:01 AM
Do you mean to tell me that the Air Force has a plane that the F-35 ISN'T going to replace?
 
2013-09-24 07:21:16 AM
The secret is the start treaty.

We built a massive number of B-52's, but by treaty we were forced to "break" most of them and leave the wreckage on display for the Russians to verify.

...but those planes had good parts, which means the smaller fleet has fifty years worth of spares. It also happens that the jobs of bomb truck haven't changed much since the Cold War.

With air defense systems getting better and our foreign influence shrinking, the buff has probably seen its last war. When punitive strikes boil down to minimalist redecorating of your enemies cities, one cruise missile sends all the message you need while endangering zero soldiers.
 
2013-09-24 07:22:56 AM
recordsfacts.files.wordpress.com
 
2013-09-24 07:24:50 AM
Yeah, and the U-2 keeps replacing the aircraft that were supposed to replace it as well.
It's outlived both the SR-71 and some of the UAVs that were supposed to follow.
 
2013-09-24 07:25:04 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: Quantum Apostrophe: The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

Peak manned aviation was the SR-71 Blackbird and Concorde.


No X-15? Or is that more rocketiation than aviation?

/Don't forget the Tu-144. The Russians beat you for most space milestones, so it's only fair to remember it.

ciberido: Quantum Apostrophe: I sound fat: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

I think this might be why they normally dont greenlight articles until after a few Total Fark members say something that makes an ounce of sense.

How do you think I feel when someone says "computers got better" as some kind of argument about how we'll colonize the universe?

The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

[fc01.deviantart.net image 850x597]


Don't forget to ask for a granite countertop for your Mars condo, it's more maintenance than quartz but holds its value better. Ask your space realtor for details.
 
2013-09-24 07:25:47 AM
There's not really a reason to retire the B-52....ever, as long as we still need bombers. It exists pretty much at the sweet spot of practical size, aerodynamics, durability, and carrying capacity for an aircraft. We keep upgrading the engines, electronics, weapon systems, etc. every so often, so why not keep the airframes flying for more than a century? The BUFF has been around so long, virtually every structural problem that could happen to one has happened and been fixed. The last major structural upgrade was in, what, the late 1960s?
 
2013-09-24 07:27:35 AM
So what... are they building new ones on the old model or are the originals still flying around?

I'd like to point out that aluminum is subject to metal fatigue regardless of the stress put on it.
Steel has a limit to what stress you can subject it to before the metal fatigue starts doing it's thing.

Anyway, aluminum will go crap at some point no matter how nice you are to it - when will it happen to the old B-52's?
Or are they built out of stone?
 
2013-09-24 07:28:19 AM

ciberido: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

[th636.photobucket.com image 119x160]
Wait until the B-52s are used to colonize SPAAAAAAACE!


The B-52 service parts will be made with 3D printers. Book it. Done.
 
2013-09-24 07:29:52 AM
The B52 and the C130 each do their jobs so well that there is really no need to change the design. It's like the 747.  Sure having new ones would be nice, but there is no need to have new designs.
 
2013-09-24 07:31:42 AM

way south: With air defense systems getting better and our foreign influence shrinking, the buff has probably seen its last war. When punitive strikes boil down to minimalist redecorating of your enemies cities, one cruise missile sends all the message you need while endangering zero soldiers.


Yeah, but the BUFF makes a great platform for launching cruise missiles, it can be anywhere in the world within hours, and it doesn't require you to leave a ship in harm's way near the target for weeks. No, you don't want one flying in close to drop bombs on any country with real air defenses, but realistically, when is there ever not going to be a squadron of fighters and a few hundred miles of airspace between the BUFF and anything that could shoot it down?

And someday, they'll probably be flying around unmanned, so there won't even be aircrews at risk. "War" in the late 21st century is gonna be weird, if it happens at all.
 
2013-09-24 07:32:54 AM

The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves: The B-52 service parts will be made with 3D printers. Book it. Done.


Nice. I like it. Succinct.

Public Savant: Steel has a limit to what stress you can subject it to before the metal fatigue starts doing it's thing.


But the apostrophe knows no limits.

Materials have limits? But like, computers and 3D printers and like technology and stuff? Like, private space tourism and like the species and the galaxy?
 
2013-09-24 07:33:19 AM
Came for Dr Strangelove pix, leaving disappointed

/OPE
 
2013-09-24 07:33:24 AM

Public Savant: So what... are they building new ones on the old model or are the originals still flying around?


The last airframe rolled off the line 50 years ago.
 
2013-09-24 07:34:27 AM

RatMaster999


Wait...why are bombing Russia and/or Vietnam?

I guess Russia has oil and natural gas, but what's Vietnam got? Nước mắm ?


Yeah, that sounds pretty fishy.
 
2013-09-24 07:35:19 AM
When my father was in the Airforce in the late 1960s, he worked on the radar and other electronics in C-130s, KC-135s, F4s, and on a rare occasion the B-52.   Meanwhile at one of the bases he was stationed they had a hanger with an SR-71 that nobody was allowed in.  Everyone wanted to see it and it would have been cool to have worked on it, but it wasn't meant to be.  I'm sure if you told him back then that some of the planes he was working on would still be flying in 2013, but the blackbird would be retired in the 1990's, he probably would have thought you were insane.
 
2013-09-24 07:35:29 AM
The B-52 has certainly been used in a lot of conflicts that the United States would have been wise to avoid. But it allowed us to fight them more effectively and less expensively than they could have been. It also dissuaded Congress from wasting even more money on unnecessary substitutes.
 
2013-09-24 07:35:57 AM

RatMaster999: Wait...why are bombing Russia and/or Vietnam?

I guess Russia has oil and natural gas, but what's Vietnam got?  Nước mắm ?


Yep.  By international convention, it's classified as a biological weapon.
 
2013-09-24 07:37:40 AM

rnatalie: Yeah, and the U-2 keeps replacing the aircraft that were supposed to replace it as well.
It's outlived both the SR-71 and some of the UAVs that were supposed to follow.


Yeah, they've been around for 30 years but Bono is starting to get a little long in the tooth.
 
2013-09-24 07:40:06 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: Quantum Apostrophe: The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

Peak manned aviation was the SR-71 Blackbird and Concorde Pou du Ciel.

 
2013-09-24 07:45:15 AM
The Bone Abides

"There are only 65 of the "Bones" (from B-One) left now, and none are doing what they were designed for (flying low and fast into heavily defended enemy territory during the Cold War to deliver nuclear weapons). But because the B-1Bs are twenty years younger than the B-52s, they were available for duty as much as the [more numerous] B-52s and became particularly popular over Afghanistan, where higher speed (compared to the B-52) enabled one B-1B to cover the entire country. On a slow day the single B-1B could hustle from one part of the country to deliver a smart bomb or two and then be off to another tense situation on the ground. This is the first sustained use of the B-1B and, by and large, the bomber has performed quite well. "

"during the 2003 invasion of Iraq the B-1B got to show its capabilities. While flying only five percent of the sorties, the B-1B delivered 40 percent of the bombs. The 216 ton aircraft can carry 34 tons of bombs in its three bomb bays"

"New maintenance procedures have eliminated a lot of the need to keep superfluous systems functional. The air force also went looking for new maintenance solutions. For example, they paid close attention to new techniques developed by commercial airlines and air forces in other countries. All this helped bring costs way down. As a result it now costs $63,000 per flight hour for the B-1B, versus $72,000 for the B-52, and the $135,000 of the B-2. "
 
2013-09-24 07:45:36 AM

ciberido: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

[th636.photobucket.com image 119x160]
Wait until the B-52s are used to colonize SPAAAAAAACE!


If the DC-8 was good enough for Xenu, it's good enough for us.
 
2013-09-24 07:46:25 AM
The US Army Deuce and a Half is from about the same time period (1951), and it's still in use.

When you've got something that just *WORKS*, and works well, it's hard to replace it.
 
2013-09-24 07:47:24 AM

Public Savant: So what... are they building new ones on the old model or are the originals still flying around?

I'd like to point out that aluminum is subject to metal fatigue regardless of the stress put on it.
Steel has a limit to what stress you can subject it to before the metal fatigue starts doing it's thing.

Anyway, aluminum will go crap at some point no matter how nice you are to it - when will it happen to the old B-52's?
Or are they built out of stone?


I could swear I've read before that there is research going on into restoring fatigued metal to its original strength, using ultrasound or some such. Maybe there will be a breakthrough in that department by the time we run out of spare B-52 parts.
 
2013-09-24 07:48:05 AM

hasty ambush: The Bone Abides


OK, that sounds like a "The Big Lebowski" porn parody.
 
2013-09-24 07:49:53 AM
upload.wikimedia.org

If that pilot is good, nobody can stop 'em !!!


Srsly; if it take a bit of damage the poor pilot has to land it with only 7 engines.
 
2013-09-24 07:51:04 AM

dittybopper: The US Army Deuce and a Half is from about the same time period (1951), and it's still in use.

When you've got something that just *WORKS*, and works well, it's hard to replace it.


And those things are practically FREE as surplus, and are nigh-unstoppable offroad. Love the bobbed customs I've seen..
 
2013-09-24 07:52:02 AM

The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves: Public Savant: So what... are they building new ones on the old model or are the originals still flying around?

The last airframe rolled off the line 50 years ago.


Think about that:  It's like the US Air Force still flying Curtiss JN-4 'Jenny' biplanes into the 1970's, or still flying P-51 Mustangs into the 1990's
 
2013-09-24 07:52:21 AM
tailhookdaily.typepad.com

tailhookdaily.typepad.com

B-52 Pilots and their Fascination with Aircraft Carriers

"It happened in early 1990 in the Persian Gulf, while U.S. carriers and B-52s were holding joint exercises. Two B-52s called the carrier (USS Ranger) and asked if they could do a fly-by, and the carrier air controller said yes.

When the B-52s reported they were 9 kilometers out, the carrier controller said he didn't see them. The B-52s told the carrier folks to look down. The paint job on the B-52 made it hard to see from above, but as it got closer, the sailors could make it out, and the water the B-52 jets were causing to spray out. It's very, very rare for a USAF aircraft to do a fly-by below the flight deck of a carrier.

But B-52s had been practicing low level flights for years, to come in under Soviet radar. In this case, the B-52 pilots asked the carrier controller if they would like the bombers come around again. The carrier guys said yes, and a lot more sailors had their cameras out this time."
 
2013-09-24 07:55:08 AM

dittybopper: HotIgneous Intruder: Quantum Apostrophe: The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

Peak manned aviation was the SR-71 Blackbird and Concorde Pou du Ciel.




Screw jet packs.
That thing is awesome.
 
2013-09-24 07:59:31 AM

Psylence: dittybopper: The US Army Deuce and a Half is from about the same time period (1951), and it's still in use.

When you've got something that just *WORKS*, and works well, it's hard to replace it.

And those things are practically FREE as surplus, and are nigh-unstoppable offroad. Love the bobbed customs I've seen..


You know, I thought you might be a little off there, but then I googled it, and apparently M35A2's in good running condition go for less than $10k, which is dirt cheap for something like that.  If I were in the market for a monster "bug out vehicle", I'd look for one like this.
 
2013-09-24 08:00:10 AM
So... I get the impression from his posts that QA is the science and technology Bevets?
 
2013-09-24 08:00:31 AM

dittybopper: hasty ambush: The Bone Abides

OK, that sounds like a "The Big Lebowski" porn parody.


Are these the Nazis, Fone Bone?
No, Smiley, these men are Rat Creatures, there's nothing to be afraid of.
 
2013-09-24 08:03:23 AM

I sound fat: Quantum Apostrophe: But computers have more memory, why are we still flying these pterodactyls? Obviously modern planes weigh a thousand times less and fly at the speed of light, because hard drives got better. All technologies scale at exactly the same rate, being based on the same principles.

I think this might be why they normally dont greenlight articles until after a few Total Fark members say something that makes an ounce of sense.


If it had computers then stuff like this wouldn't happen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sjFIB1L3BPU
 
2013-09-24 08:05:05 AM

way south: dittybopper: HotIgneous Intruder: Quantum Apostrophe: The fact that something like a B-52 still exists at all should be a big fat clue that our physical technologies have plateaued, maybe even regressed... Do they still fly the Concorde? But we're totally colonizing the Moon.

Peak manned aviation was the SR-71 Blackbird and Concorde Pou du Ciel.

Screw jet packs.
That thing is awesome.


You can even get a no-license required ultralight version if you want.
 
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