When asked to make a statement regarding the Valiant's scrapping in the House of Commons, Denis Healey stated that it "was not in any way connected with low-level flying" and that the "last Government took the decision to continue operating the Valiant force for another four years after its planned fatigue life was complete". , The electrics used 112 volt direct current generators, one on each engine, for functions requiring large amounts of electrical power.  It has been claimed that the survivability of the rear crewmen was substantially reduced due to the ineffectiveness of this method of escape. , On 11 October 1956, a Valiant B.1 (WZ366) of No 49 Squadron was the first RAF aircraft to drop a British atomic bomb when it performed a test drop of a down-rated Blue Danube weapon on Maralinga, South Australia. While the Valiant I had to report to RAF Sopley and travelled via Bournemouth Central, where I was picked up by a returning sergeant in his car. These included non-stop flights from the UK to Nairobi, RAF Gan and Singapore. Victors and Vulcans now beginning to become operational as well, it might have made some sense over 2,000 B-47s produced in the US). I flew the Valiant,90 Sqn, Honington, from 1960 until it was grounded in Dec, 1964. took over the testing role, to be joined by more Vulcans and Victors later on.  The brakes and steering gear were hydraulically powered, the hydraulic pumps being electrically driven. 214 Squadron at RAF Marham, operational in 1958, and No. been intended to have a larger blast but in the end they played safe and went for a smaller one The HDU equipment was removable so that the aircraft could be reverted to the bomber role if required. Wed 14 Mar 2007 // 10:37 UTC 4 Got Tips? , The fuselage area behind the pressurised crew section and forward of the wing was used to house much of the Valiant's avionics, and air conditioning equipment, and was sometimes called the "organ loft". (no nose gear to hit) and the Victor (the Valiant crew door being much lower than the engine intakes).  Valiants were originally assigned to the strategic nuclear bombing role, as were the Vulcan and Victor B.1s when they became operational. The Victor and Vulcan V-bombers remained in service until the 1980s. Each of the main gears were equipped with multipad anti-skid disc brakes, and were telescopically linked so that a single drive motor could pull them up into the wing recesses.  It was fitted with more powerful RA.7 Avon engines with 7,500 pounds-force (33 kN) thrust each, rather than the Sapphires that had been originally planned; it also featured more rounded air inlets, replacing the narrow slot-type intakes of the first prototype, in order to feed sufficient air to the more powerful engines. If so, give this "Gentleman" my kind regards. The Vickers-Armstrongs Valiant is a British high-altitude jet bomber, and was part of the Royal Air Force's "V bomber" nuclear weapon equipped strategic deterrent 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. Only the co-pilot ejected safely. Several remained in flying condition, being on loan to what was 543 Squadron at RAF Wyton were modified to serve in the photographic reconnaissance role.  This was followed on 6 August by a failure of the starboard wing rear spar at 30,000 ft, in WP217, an OCU aircraft from Gaydon captained by Flight Lieutenant "Taffy" Foreman. It was ideal for such applications as wing spar caps providing, as was the case with wartime operations, the life of the aircraft was short. However, nobody My father was the QFI piloting WP217 when the wing spar went. Accidents and Incidents. Military Aviation - Valiant crash, Wittering, August 1960 - On the 12th August 1960 a Valiant (XD864 according to UK Serials.com) of 7 Squadron refurbishing the Valiant fleet was simply too high, and the Valiant force was grounded completely His log book typically understates the event as a no flaps landing. Site contents copyright © 2020Damien Burke/Handmade by Machine Ltd. The first prototype of the V-1000 was almost completed A 16 foot jet-powered replica of a Vickers Valiant which cost model-maker Simon Steggall £15k, two years' graft, and one wife, crashed and burned on its fourth flight, The Sun reports. While the US Strategic Air Command I produced several drawings showing staff positions at the time of fire for the enquiry. been trialled with Lincolns and Meteors; Vickers proved the Valiant was up to the job as well by squadron was formed; 138 Squadron. 115 V alternating current was provided to systems such as radar; the actuators for the flight surfaces, flaps, air brakes and undercarriage. , In October and November 1956 the Valiant was the first of the V-bombers to see combat, during the Anglo-French-Israeli Suez campaign. , The wing was mounted high on the aircraft's fuselage and the placement of the engines and main landing gear within the wing limited the fuel that the wing could carry. It was a good place to be stationed. Perhaps we will know one day – but I doubt it.  By the time the type was scrapped, only about 50 aircraft were still in service; the rest had been slowly accumulating at various RAF Maintenance Units designated as "Non effective Aircraft". Date: 12-JAN-1952: Time: approx 15.00: Type: Vickers Valiant: Owner/operator: A&AEE (Aeroplane & Armament Experimental Establishment ) Registration: WB210 Posted at 9:36pm on Wednesday, March 7th, 2018. them, XD816, had taken part in the flypast on the 29th of April 1968 to mark the disbandment After the WP217 incident an emergency spar inspection programme was put into place and the enormity of the problem was soon apparent - the majority of Valiants had significant stress fractures. of the V-1000 was a serious blow to both Vickers and the British taxpayer, and incurred a cost of £4 million - a much lighter shade, with serials applied in the light blue used in the roundels.  Vickers' submission had initially been rejected as not being as advanced as the Victor and the Vulcan, but Vickers' chief designer George Edwards lobbied the Air Ministry on the basis that it would be available much sooner than the competition, going so far as to promise that a flight-capable prototype would be flown by the end of 1951, that subsequent production aircraft would be flown prior to the end of 1953, and that serial deliveries would commence during early 1955. In 1962, in response to advances in Soviet Union surface-to-air missile (SAM) technology, the V-force fleet including the Valiant changed from high level flying to flying at low-level to avoid SAM attacks that they would have received if they were flying at high altitudes.  The B.2 was intended to serve as a Pathfinder aircraft, flying at low level to mark targets for the main bomber force. Vickers Valiant WP222, 138 Squadron, RAF: Written off (destroyed) 29/7/55 when crashed shortly after take off from RAF Wittering. made the news, Egypt wasn't about to be as discreet as the USAF. This is comment section 1 of 10. The first type 660, WB210, flew on the 18th of of their operating squadrons. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can. On 21 December 1953, the production aircraft conducted its first flight; this had again occurred within the schedule that Edwards had promised. [N 3] The pilot and copilot were provided with Martin-Baker Mk.3 ejector seats, while the rear crewmen were expected to bail out of the oval main entrance door on the port side of the fuselage. slightly smaller size, the B-47 was considerably faster (though the Valiant B.2 would have given If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can.  The timing of this order was key to establishing production quickly. Five - pilot, copilot, tactical navigator, radar operator and air electronics officer. Aviation authors Bill Gunston and Peter Gilchrist described Specification B.14/46 as "calling for little more than a traditional aircraft fitted with jet engines" Short submitted a conservative design to meet B.14/46, which became the S.A.4 Sperrin.  In 1963 a squadron of Gloster Javelin fighters was refuelled by tankers and flew in stages from the UK to India (Exercise "Shiksha") to support the Indian Air Force in a dispute over their border with China. ", Burnet, Charles and Eric B. Morgan. prior warning (to keep casualties to a minimum), Egyptian forces put up almost no resistance. In 1956 RAF Marham and RAF Honington were prepared for V-Force operations and five more Valiant squadrons were formed - fatigued spars was looked into. Happy memories of our detachment to Stornoway! What was so special about the Hastings and why was the Valiant not treated similarly? no fire indicators were present in the areas on fire and the engine temperatures remained normal.  The number of hours flown by each Valiant in a year was an operational issue for the RAF. By 1962 the Air Staff had belatedly come to the realisation that Soviet air defences were In March 1957, four 49 Squadron Valiants were detached to The first B.1s entered service with 232 Operational Conversion Unit at RAF  The two tanker squadrons regularly practised long range missions, refuelled by other Valiant tankers on the way. ", This page was last edited on 30 October 2020, at 07:39. This page last updated on Sunday 20th November 2016. The RAF had realised earlier that their new bombers would be ideal reconnaisance platforms I presumed they had not been warned that this was to happen. During Operation Musketeer, the British military operation in what became known as the Suez Crisis, Valiants operating from the airfield at Luqa on Malta dropped conventional bombs on targets inside Egypt. 29 July 1955; Valiant B1 WP222 of No.  This was because the thickness/chord ratio could be reduced closer to the tips. Supply called for a bomber capable of carrying a 10,000 lb bomb, travelling at 500 knots was now located in big fairings underneath the wings instead of within the wing itself (enabling increased in-wing fuel capacity and a simple affair, but it wasn't considered, and the end result would be a prematurely retired Valiant force. , The main structural components, spars and beams of the Valiant had been constructed from a zinc/magnesium/copper aluminium alloy designated as DTD683 in the UK. , Valiants of No. P.1127 (Harrier forerunner) programme - a Pegasus engine complete with rotating exhausts was mounted in the bomb bay. 1955. In late 1964 a repair programme was underway, but a change of Government led to the new Minister of Defence Denis Healey deciding that the Valiant should be retired from service, and this happened in early 1965.  No 49 Squadron was selected to perform the live weapon drop, and were equipped with specially-modified Valiants to conform with the scientific requirements of the tests and other precautionary measures to protect against heat and radiation.
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