1) No. I was going to write an article about A-11s, the watches. Greg and I decided to let the Hangar project slide (if you're curious, e-mail me).
2) Here's the abbreviated Hangar article on A-10s that I'm not writing.
The A-10 is that rare project which came in ahead of schedule, under budget, and outperformed expectations.
The whole concept was a plane that could destroy tanks on the ground and survive in that relatively slow speed, hostile environment close to the ground.
The 30mm gatling gun, using spent uranium rounds, was the heart and soul of the system. The airframe was developed around it (you are right.)
The engines are placed in a spot of minimum vulnerability; the pilot sits inside an armored titanium bathtub, if you will; systems are not only redundant but things like hydraulic lines for each system are routed differently so that one hit doesn't knock out both systems, for instance. The plane can take an amazing amount of punishment, protect its pilot, and keep flying. At an air show early in the plane's life (I believe that it was the Paris Air Show) the pilot misjudged a low altitude loop and crashed the plane into the ground. Out of the huge dust cloud came sliding along the ground . . . the titanium bathtub: Saved his a**.
The Air Force was planning to retire the plane but its performance in the Gulf War was so impressive that they decided to hang on to it for a while. I'm not sure what its current status is.
3) Sheeple stampede=bigger target. Yup. Viz 'Highway of Death', Kuwait, ca. February 1991.
Posted on Oct 10, 2000, 4:11 PM from IP address 18.104.22.168