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Cable-launched Blue Steel

Maury Markowitz

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I suspect I originally saw this here, but I can't find it now. There was a proposal to launch Blue Steel at very low altitudes by dragging it behind the launch aircraft on a cable. Does anyone have a pointer to material on this?
 

CJGibson

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That I would like to see.

Chris
 

Grey Havoc

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Has anything emerged on this proposal since?
 

CJGibson

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I have to wonder how a flight vehicle optimised for Mach 2.5 - 3 would behave when dragged behind a Vulcan at Mach 0.8. Smacks of a tin can tied to a wedding car. Toppled gyros for a start.

Chris
 

Zootycoon

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Sure just a Blue Steel on its own wouldn’t work (no where near enough wing area) but maybe attached to jettisonable cradle which itself has some wings and some tail feathers I think you could get to something approaching feasible. I was once told by someone a bit closer to those trying to use the pig, it was rarely serviceable for a whole flight even in the relatively benign bay so being very cold and bounced around behind a V bomber is a real ask. The tricky bit of any glider tow is the first inch of altitude so an automatic system for this would really stretch the technology. Remember it’s pretty fragile, packed with not so nice HTP and a dirty great bucket of instant sunshine. It wouldn’t survive an unplanned contact with the ground and the results would be very unpleasant.
 
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Apophenia

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Not what was being described but this diagram shows the 100-foot lanyard for arming Blue Steel.

The image came from a report on a May 2019 Royal Aeronautical Society lecture, Blue-Steel- The V Force's Stand-off Bomb, by Air Cdre Norman Bonnor.
 

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Maury Markowitz

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This must be what I saw, having been re-labeled to pretend it was a tow launch.
 

Grey Havoc

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Ì'd suspect rather that it was a genuine proposal, but someone repurposed a pre-existing piece of art to illustrate it.
 

CJGibson

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Were the RAF planning to tow BL.755s as well?

Chris
 

CJGibson

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Which one?

I didn't get where I am today by not avoiding cliches like the plague.

or...

Blah blah ramble Snake! blah ramble

or...

Terrence St John Wuckfitt

Chris
 

Hood

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Some say the concept was thought up by Barnes Wallis when the elastic band snapped during spinning up an Upkeep mine.
 

Ravinoff

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I mean, if the US experimented with an air-launched Minuteman dropped out the back of a C-5, I can almost see someone pulling out the idea of a towed standoff missile. It's not a good idea, obviously, but this WAS the era that gave us the SLAM and the chicken-warmed nuclear landmine.
 

CNH

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I do remember reading about a proposal from Bristol about carrying their proposed X12/Pandora missile in a transport aircraft, and to launch it, it would be pushed out backwards from the hold of the aircraft.

It didn't strike me as being a very viable proposition.
 
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