Re: Concorde's Engines

Date:         07 Aug 99 01:23:01 
From: (John Wright)
Organization: Janet, me and our cats in our little cottage
References:   1 2 3 4 5
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On 10 Jul 99 02:33:43 , in <airliners.1999.763@ohare.Chicago.COM>, Steve
Lacker wrote:
>Pete Finlay wrote:
>> The main nuclear deterrent from the 1950s to the 1966 was the Avro
>> Vulcan, which was a missile platform.
>Did the Vulcans actually go out of service THAT long ago? The Vulcan and
>the B-58 are two of my favorite designs. They both had a very short
>service life.

No, the Vulcan was in service to the 1980s - they were used to bomb Port
Stanley airport during the Falklands conflict in 1982. At the end of
that year they were finally retired as bombers, although some lasted
till 1983 in the reconnaissance role. What happened in 1966 is that they
ceased to be the main British nuclear deterrent, so in effect from that
date they had a mission change. The Royal Navy took over the nuclear
deterrent role with Polaris missile carrying submarines.

Also, only the B2A variant actually carried the Blue Steel stand off
missile - the B1s and B2s carried free fall weapons.

>> Interestingly enough, the Vulcan used RR Olympus 201 (later 301)
>> engines,

101s in the B1, 201s or 301s in the B2.

>Isn't it more correct to say that the Vulcan used BRISTOL Olympus
>engines, since it was built prior to the RR/Bristol merger? ;-)

Absolutely, and they would still insist on calling it a Bristol engine
to this very day. A good friend of mine who works in Derby says that the
people in Derby refer to the company as Royce's (as they always did),
while the people at Bristol still think of themselves as a separate
company. Not to mention Barnoldswick, which is still regarded as Rovers.

>more I learn about the history of Bristol and RR turbine engine
>development, the clearer it becomes that RR gained a lot of expertiese
>through that merger... and then ignored it until very late in the
>development of the RB.211 when a retired Bristol engineer was called
>back to consult on the project and undertook a major re-design.

Sir Stanley Hooker, the engineer you refer to, worked for Royces on the
Merlin/Griffon superchargers from 1938 onwards, revolutionising the
performance of these engines by improvements in the performance of the
superchargers and air inlets. He was then very influential in the design
of the Welland and Derwent, which powered the Meteor - the first RAF jet
fighter, and also the Nene - not greatly used in Britain but which was
the basis of the engine used in the MiG-15 and MiG-17 and Avon
turbojets, and the Clyde and Dart turboprops.

After a row with Sir Ernest Hives then chairman of R-R, (over the
location of turbine engine manufacture - Hooker was at Barnoldswick,
Hives at Derby) Hooker left Rolls-Royce in 1948 and went to Bristol
Engines, having a large hand in the Olympus and Pegasus engines. He
returned to Rolls-Royce from retirement when the RB-211 was going pear
shaped in late 1970 - again it was his influence that started the RB-211
on the way to being the world class engine it is today. Never
underestimate the worth of Sir Stanley Hooker in the British aero-engine
industry...  If you can find the biography of him "Not Much of an
Engineer" by Bill Gunston, it will tell you much more.
John Wright

"There's spam egg sausage and spam, that's not got _much_ spam in it."
"I don't want *any* spam..."