avatar_GTX

Bill Gunston's conceptual stealth aircraft designs

Started by GTX, November 21, 2009, 02:30:46 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

GTX

On a related note, has anyone ever tried modelling some of Bill Gunston's conceptual designs:




Regards,

Greg
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

Weaver

Oh, you beat me to it, Greg: the discussion about the Development SIG's Stealth theme made me wonder if these were elegible.

What always struck me about the fighter is that:

a) there's virtually NO room for the engines (bearing in mind it's got a weapons bay),

b) the intake must be right above the fans: the flow path must be worse than a Harrier's (which has about the tightest bend you can get away with)!
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

Stargazer

Am I the only one to think that Bill Gunston artwork was pretty pointless in the book? On the one hand he says that it represents what he thought was right at some point before he changed his mind, and then he fills pages with that "what if" material that isn't even based on any known manufacturer's designs... Gunston always goes for sensationalism, the same way he filled pages with the Aurora without any serious account from anyone who's been on the project or even remotely saw a drawing of it. I keep away from his books as much as I can...

GTX

Quote from: Stargazer2006 on November 21, 2009, 03:13:06 PM
Am I the only one to think that Bill Gunston artwork was pretty pointless in the book? On the one hand he says that it represents what he thought was right at some point before he changed his mind, and then he fills pages with that "what if" material that isn't even based on any known manufacturer's designs... Gunston always goes for sensationalism, the same way he filled pages with the Aurora without any serious account from anyone who's been on the project or even remotely saw a drawing of it. I keep away from his books as much as I can...

Yep, you are the only one!  The purpose wasn't to say they were based on manufacturer's designs - as far as I am aware he always clearly stated they were his own conjecture.  I found his work extremely useful and inspiring as I grew up and would recommend them to anyone.

Greg
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

rickshaw

Quote from: Weaver on November 21, 2009, 02:42:04 PM
Oh, you beat me to it, Greg: the discussion about the Development SIG's Stealth theme made me wonder if these were elegible.

What always struck me about the fighter is that:

a) there's virtually NO room for the engines (bearing in mind it's got a weapons bay),

b) the intake must be right above the fans: the flow path must be worse than a Harrier's (which has about the tightest bend you can get away with)!

Are you referring to the inlet path or the outlet(s) path?
How to reduce carbon emissions - Tip #1 - Walk to the Bar for drinks.

Weaver

Quote from: rickshaw on November 21, 2009, 11:54:46 PM
Quote from: Weaver on November 21, 2009, 02:42:04 PM
Oh, you beat me to it, Greg: the discussion about the Development SIG's Stealth theme made me wonder if these were elegible.

What always struck me about the fighter is that:

a) there's virtually NO room for the engines (bearing in mind it's got a weapons bay),

b) the intake must be right above the fans: the flow path must be worse than a Harrier's (which has about the tightest bend you can get away with)!

Are you referring to the inlet path or the outlet(s) path?

Inlet path. One reason why a side-by-side two-seat Harrier (the RAF's preferred layout) was rejected was that severe losses would result from making the bend in the intake path any sharper.
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

rickshaw

Quote from: Weaver on November 22, 2009, 01:24:54 AM
Inlet path. One reason why a side-by-side two-seat Harrier (the RAF's preferred layout) was rejected was that severe losses would result from making the bend in the intake path any sharper.

Interesting.  I wasn't aware there was a bend, as such, in the Harrier's inlet path.  IIRC, can't you see the face of the fan through the intakes on either side of the fuselage?
How to reduce carbon emissions - Tip #1 - Walk to the Bar for drinks.

PR19_Kit

You can indeed, but the cockpit is right in the direct path of the airflow, remembering that aircraft will normally be flying foward, and pretty quickly too. So the air has to go past the cockpit on either side, get captured by the Big Ears on either side and then be turned through two S bends to meet that front fan at 90 deg. And it's lazy stuff, is air, it just likes to keep on doing what it's already doing........ :)
Kit's Rule 1 ) Any aircraft can be improved by fitting longer wings, and/or a longer fuselage
Kit's Rule 2) The backstory can always be changed to suit the model

...and I'm not a closeted 'Take That' fan, I'm a REAL fan! :)

Regards
Kit

elmayerle

No different than what you find coming out of most Advanced Design organizations.  While I was at Northrop, I overheard some grousing about one AD proposal where certain nonsense like this was detected (the diameter of the rear fuselage as drawn was less than the diameter of the engine that was supposed to fit there).  Though it might "Stifle creativity", I've often felt that AD organizations could stand to have designers from the 'real world" rotate through there to provide some common sense.
"Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it."
--Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin

anthonyp

I've got the book these appeared in.  Bill's editorializing is laugh-out-loud funny when read today since he was really, really off back then.

Caption beneath the last pic in the book (a NATO E-3):
"The author cannot understand how an aircraft can survive on the ground, nor an AWACS in the sky.  The flying lighthouses seem utterly vulnerable; and how could they control invisible stealth aircraft?"

Love his insight even back then to what AWACS actually stood for (Airborne Warning And CONTROL System).  He also seems to have a thing against stealth aircraft operating from land bases at all.

Meh, Gunstun was always good for pics, not actual practical independent analysis.  The book did have a lot of cool pics.
I exist to pi$$ others off!!!
My categorized models directory on my site.
My site (currently with no model links).
"Build what YOU like, the way YOU want to." - a wise man

Chris707

Re - the supercruise ATB: if you're going to all the trouble of producing a stealthy penetrating platform that can cruise above the Mach, why mate it to subsonic ALCM/ACMs? Wouldn't it make more sense to use something like an AGM-131? You'd still have enough range to stay away from all but the longest range SAMs...


Chris
-----------------------------------------
http://www.dataviewbooks.com/skybolt.html

nev

Quote from: anthonyp on November 22, 2009, 08:28:50 AM
I've got the book these appeared in.  Bill's editorializing is laugh-out-loud funny when read today since he was really, really off back then.

Caption beneath the last pic in the book (a NATO E-3):
"The author cannot understand how an aircraft can survive on the ground, nor an AWACS in the sky.  The flying lighthouses seem utterly vulnerable; and how could they control invisible stealth aircraft?"

Love his insight even back then to what AWACS actually stood for (Airborne Warning And CONTROL System).  He also seems to have a thing against stealth aircraft operating from land bases at all.

Meh, Gunstun was always good for pics, not actual practical independent analysis.  The book did have a lot of cool pics.

Yeah, but it was the 80s when everything revolved around WW3 with the Ruskies.  One thing that he did harp on about was the need for dispersion, since a Russian attack would involve a barrage of tactical nukes on NATO airfields.

And declassified WP documents show that on that one at least, he was right.  Although the worth of "winning" a war that starts with the use of hundreds of nukes is debatable...
Between almost-true and completely-crazy, there is a rainbow of nice shades - Tophe


Sales of Airfix kits plummeted in the 1980s, and GCSEs had to be made easier as a result - James May

Sauragnmon

I find the designs rather interesting, though I agree - that stealth fighter idea might have a bit of a premium for weapons space.  It'd probably wind up a little more hunchbacked, with an incline-mounted engine and the exhaust ducted into place for the lift jets so as to make space for the weapons bay, though it still wouldn't have a whole lot of space.

The Supercruise bomber would be quite an interesting one - I'd use a snake-eye style bomb potentially, or a bay-carried ramjet-driven nuke missile - it depends on the strategic theory - are you actually penetrating enemy airspace and going Right over their heads to deliver, which would probably be the primary high-speed stealth method, or are you blowing close to them, penetrating just the perimeter, releasing and booking it backtrack style?
Putty-fu, Scratch-jutsu and Bash-chi, the sacred martial arts of the What-If. Mastering them, is Ancient Chinese Secret.

Just your friendly neighbourhood Mad Scientist and Ship-whiffer.

Overkill? Nah, it's Insurance.  So are the 20" guns.

Cobra

Gunston was Right about a Few Things, However..............the Supercruise Bomber looks like something You'd see in "Stingray","Thunderbirds",or Most Likely........."Captain scarlet"!!!!!!!!!!! Seen Gunston on The History Channel's Show "Dogfights",Quite Insightful on some Points!!!!!!!! Stay Cool :ph34r: :cheers:

rickshaw

Quote from: PR19_Kit on November 22, 2009, 05:50:34 AM
You can indeed, but the cockpit is right in the direct path of the airflow, remembering that aircraft will normally be flying foward, and pretty quickly too. So the air has to go past the cockpit on either side, get captured by the Big Ears on either side and then be turned through two S bends to meet that front fan at 90 deg. And it's lazy stuff, is air, it just likes to keep on doing what it's already doing........ :)

Mmm, while I agree with your characterisation of what air likes to do, I don't with your characterisation of the inlet path of the Harrier.  If you can see the fan face there doesn't appear IMHO to be much of an "S" bend there.
How to reduce carbon emissions - Tip #1 - Walk to the Bar for drinks.