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Photo Highlights, Washington DC — By Jon Rochetti on May 26, 2010 at 11:55 pm
Filed under: aviation, featuredphoto

Photo Recap of the Joint Service Air Show

Last weekend at Andrews Air Force Base, all branches of the military – Army, Marines, Air Force, Navy and Coast Guard held their annual Joint Service Open House.  And as usual, the aviators put on one heck of a show.

Besides the Blue Angels and Golden Knights, aviation fans were treated to a acrobatic performance by the Gieco Skytypers,  and a demonstration flight of the $150 million, Mach 2+, F-22 Raptor.

Another aircraft that impressed the crowd is the vertical lift off and landing AV-8B Harrier jet.   The Harrier is capable of 662 mph (1,070 km/h) and can take off or land in a space of about 60 feet.

Sean Tucker of Team Oracle also performed his famous 300 mph upside down crowd pass at just 10 feet off the ground.

But the Blue Angels were the headliner.  As the Navy’s flight demonstration squadron, the six-pilot team fly F/A-18 Hornet fighters.  The Hornet has been the squadron’s aircraft since 1986.  Since their formation in 1946, by the direction of Navy Admiral Chester Nimitz, they have entertained over 400 million spectators around the globe.

Blues Angles in flight

Even though their acrobatic maneuvers produce high G-forces (up to 7Gs,) Blue Angel pilots do not wear G-suits.  They are trained to simply clench their stomachs to keep the blood flowing  and avoid blacking out.   On maneuver, their unexpected sneak pass over the audience at 700 mph (just under the speed of sound and about half their full speed) shows the power, speed (and  noise) of the F/A-18.

Blue Angles peel off Blkue Angles Fat Albert vertical climb

Airborne troops parachuting.jpg

Gieco Skytypers in formation.jpg F-22 Raptor in flight

Blue Angles in tight formation

Off we go…into the wild, blue yonder!!

Tags: aviation, featuredphoto

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