Ejector seats

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Can anyone advise me as to whether an aircraft has been made whereupon an ejector seat discharged whoever DOWNWARDS?. If so, was it succesfull ?. Lincoln. 7
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I think the B-52 Stratofortress had 2. I'm sure Ive read somewhere about others,may be in testing of systems or the dangers of a tail strike.
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Both B52 navigators ejected downwards from the lower deck of the flight deck,downward ejection is ok if you have height/speed to play with but would not appeal to me for a low/slow scenario :eek:
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Early F104 starfighters had them too.
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Never really understood the logic of downward ejection seats. After all if an aircraft is in trouble it is sooner or later going to be going in one direction.. down. So whats the point of accelerating the pilot / crew even quicker towards mother earth, unless of course he's inverted?!

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Didn't the bombaimer in the B47 eject downwards?
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Tu-22 Blinder too, and one AH-56 Cheyenne prototype (with a low-flying helicopter that would probably meant that an ejection would give you an instant burial).
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As opposed to instant decapitation going upwards. Not much to choose? Moggy
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Recent Kamov choppers have explosive bolts fitted to the rotos, so, if you eject, the rotor blades go ahead beforehand. The reason for downwards ejection seats was that they didn't have a rocket motor powerful enough to clear the tail in most cases / they had to save weight.

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Blimkey! Not sure if I'd want to chance my arm let alone my head. The thought of all those waywardly flayling rotor blades.......:eek:
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Exactly, and risking those explosive bolts not.. err.. exploding! :(

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Or worse still...only some of them exploding.:diablo:

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Blimkey! Not sure if I'd want to chance my arm let alone my head. The thought of all those waywardly flayling rotor blades.......:eek:
It's not like they don't actually do loads of testing or nothing..... :rolleyes: What would you prefer - a chance of surviving - or certainty of death ?? The Myasischev M-50 'Bounder' also had downward ejecting seats..... http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/modl_m-50_files/m-50_023.jpg http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/modl_m-50_files/m-50_027.jpg Like the Tu-22, the seats also dropped down for the crew to climb into - although using those ladders looks more dangerous than actually ejecting .. :eek: http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/modl_m-50_files/ladder_01.jpg http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/modl_m-50_files/ladder_02.jpg As frankvw has said - early seats were not powerful enough to guarantee clearing the fin as high speed, so downward ejection was preferred (early F-104, Tu-22, M-50 etc). Later seats with more powerful rocket motors obviated the need.... Ken

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Flanker - "It's not like they don't actually do loads of testing or nothing....." No, really? Are you sure?......:rolleyes::) Let's just say the chances of failure are exponentially increased the greater the number of bolts to explode......

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The Myasischev M-50 'Bounder' also had downward ejecting seats...
Blimey, that thing looks like it was designed by Gerry Anderson! :D Did it ever get into service? I suppose you’d have to balance the odds of an upward-firing seat not clearing the tail at high speed against the danger of a downward-firing seat being useless during the take-off and landing phase of a flight and with the gear extended? Should that rather delicate looking undercarriage collapse I trust there was an escape-hatch above the crew. There must be a limit to the g-force the human body can stand being ejected downwards and I’d guess it would be less that that for being ejected upwards but at least with the system in the M-50 Bounder the whole crew has that option (unlike 60% of the crew of a Victor or Vulcan). Interesting stuff, thanks for posting those photographs. Is it your model?

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Blimey, that thing looks like it was designed by Gerry Anderson! :D Did it ever get into service?
No, only one was produced - and it fell victim to Kruschevs 'missile only' doctrine. It was meant to be a long-range supersonic bomber but never went supersonic - being let down by its engines. I wrote this for the model article accompanying the model build... On 16 September a speed of 1,090 km/h (677mph) was achieved – which according to the flight data, corresponded to a speed of Mach 1.01, although subsequent recalculations by engineers at LII (the Flight Test Institute) reduced this to Mach 0.99. The flight crew, however, were convinced that they had ‘gone supersonic’ – pointing out the physical phenomena experienced – such as the disappearance of jolting and lagging of the engine noise.
I suppose you’d have to balance the odds of an upward-firing seat not clearing the tail at high speed against the danger of a downward-firing seat being useless during the take-off and landing phase of a flight and with the gear extended? Should that rather delicate looking undercarriage collapse I trust there was an escape-hatch above the crew.
Early upward-firing ejection seats wouldn't have been any better during takeoff and landing as they couldn't have fired the seat high enough for the parachute to deploy properly - they only worked within a narrow band of airspeed and altitude. The downward firing seat would have been just as good as an upward firing seat at altitude - that's where they were both designed to operate. It is only in recent years that aircrew have had zero-zero ejection seats - able to provide safe ejection from a plane standing still on the runway.
Is it your model?
Yes - build photos here Ken
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The reason for downwards ejection seats was that they didn't have a rocket motor powerful enough to clear the tail in most cases / they had to save weight.
In the case of the B52 I doubt the older models had rocket seats anyway,I would imagine with the B52 it was to keep the dimension of the crew compartment to a reasonable length...The 2 Pilots,EWO + Gunner all had upward firing seats (top deck). With a non rocket upward seat it is the forward airspeed/trajectory of the seat that gives a successful ejection - you would be more likely to hit the fin at low speed !The tragic death of the Tornado Nav a couple of years ago (seat fell out of a/c whilst inverted) illustrates that in extremis !

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Early upward-firing ejection seats wouldn't have been any better during takeoff and landing as they couldn't have fired the seat high enough for the parachute to deploy properly - they only worked within a narrow band of airspeed and altitude. The downward firing seat would have been just as good as an upward firing seat at altitude - that's where they were both designed to operate.
Good point about the lack of zero-zero seats but I’d still say that an upward-firing seat would give the crew a better chance of escape during much of the landing and take-off phase at low (not zero) speed and low (not zero) altitude (if the seats could clear the tail that is). The problem is then, as you say, that upward-firing seats probably wouldn’t have coped with clearing the tail at the high-speed that the aircraft was designed to operate at and for which it would spend much more of its time (and all of its combat time). It’s a toss-up as to which would give the crew a better chance or which would give them more confidence in the aircraft. Anyway it’s a great looking aircraft (if a tad ugly) and very reminiscent of a B-58 Hustler (or is that no accident)... ...I don’t suppose it survives does it?

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Early F104 starfighters had them too.
Correct and one of the reasons it got called a widow maker. How true it is I don't know but I've heard tell that the Luftwaffe had as many pilot losses after the F-104 was fitted with upward ejection seats because their crews had become conditioned to the idea of downward ejection seats that if they got into difficulties they were rolling inverted and firing themselves into the ground as before.

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...I don’t suppose it survives does it?
Yes - at the Russian Air Force Museum at Monino...... http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/moscow_2006_files/day_01_041.jpg http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/moscow_2007_files/day01_032.jpg
Should that rather delicate looking undercarriage collapse
The front bogie of that 'delicate looking undercarriage' was designed to pivot about the front strut during the takeoff run - leaving only the rear wheels (of the front four) touching the ground. It increased the aircrafts angle-of-attack during takeoff. :eek: Ken