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atomic powered bombers

Discussion in 'Air Warfare' started by me262 phpbb3, Dec 2, 2007.

  1. me262 phpbb3

    me262 phpbb3 New Member

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    during the 50's the then USSR and the USA studied the possibility of powering planes by atomic power,USSR bounder and the USA XB 36H. but none managed to make it effective or safe
    now my question, and sorry for my ignorance, how do they work?, in layman terms
     
  2. Commando

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    They had engines which were powered by mysterious nuclear forces! :grin:
     
  3. me262 phpbb3

    me262 phpbb3 New Member

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    very funny!!!!
    :D
     
  4. Commando

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    I don't know how the engines worked sorry.
     
  5. Notmi

    Notmi New Member

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    Nuclear reactor produces heat and this heat is transferred to engines and this heat powers the engines. Ofcourse it was in reality a bit more complex...
     
  6. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    There were two system tried I belive: open loop and closed loop. Former had was fairly simple but there was a pretty good chance they would spew radionation out the back. The closed loop was safer, using indirect heating but was much heavier. The other big problem they never really solved was the question of shielding for the crew. Plus of course aircraft do crash from time to time, which isn't great if the thing has a nuclear reactor on board. The idea was abandoned in the sixties when the navy took over the role of nuclear deterant.
     
  7. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf New Member

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    Until man achieves that nuclear holy grail, cold fusion, as in Back to the Future - it's a complete non-starter. Fission reactors are just too heavy and too dangerous to put in an aircraft - imagine hundreds of little Chernobyls circling the globe at 20,000' 24-7 in various states of maintenance.

    :eek:

    PS. If George Bush is reading - tht's nuculer.
     
  8. Hubsu

    Hubsu New Member

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  9. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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    I've always been a little puzzled about attitudes towards nuclear powered stuff. For example, build a nuclear power station, and you are risking the health of everybody and everything nearby. Build a nuclear-powered sub or ship, and you are making an excellent decision regarding fuel issues.

    The obvious solution - put submarine-type power-plants in civilian power stations! :grin:
     
  10. FNG phpbb3

    FNG phpbb3 New Member

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    there is more to it than that.

    Firstly ship and especially sub plants do not generate the power needed for civilian use, unless you had one in every small town.

    Plus these things are often far away from civilisation in the mid sea so peeps don't think about them as much

    FNG
     
  11. majorwoody10

    majorwoody10 New Member

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    when cheap oil runs out ( soon, it seems ) ..people will be freezing to death and pipe dream wind and solar generators aint gonna cut it ,not even in our wildest dreams ...nuclear power plants are gonne fly up all over the world and their wont be any whinning about spent fuel rods either , watch and see ...
     
  12. majorwoody10

    majorwoody10 New Member

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    btw ..very lol ,commando !!
     
  13. Robinson phpbb3

    Robinson phpbb3 New Member

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    It still would have been interesting to see som NB-36's flying almost non-stop in the Cold War skies.
     
  14. Commando

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    They would have had to have stopped sometime to change crews and reload ammo, missiles, etc.
     
  15. me262 phpbb3

    me262 phpbb3 New Member

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    and what about maintenance, wear and tear, and metal fatigue?
    the b 36 was know for it metal fatigue due it's size, big, very big bird!!!!!
     
  16. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    Remember these are aircraft carrying nuclear bombs. In the event that you've used your ordinance you don't go back to base. You flew off to find somewhere that wasn't now glowing in the dark.

    The big, big problem with aircraft carrying the nuclear deterant was they were only any use if they were in the air with enough fuel to get somewhere worth bombing. That was why there had to be these huge bomber fleets; because in the event of war, a lot of them are going to get taken out on the ground. But if you can get a nuclear powered bomber to work, well now you can have them in the air whenever international tensions rise. A bomber can take off on Monday and only land on Friday, when rations start to run out. Basically you'll be able to attack with almost all your bombers at any moment.
     
  17. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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    Basically it is like a nuclear-powered sub, you can patrol for as long as your food and drink last. In an aeroplane, that is less time than for a sub (for obvious reasons of weight and space) but a flight-time of up to a week is a definate possibility. I just wouldn't like to be the flight crew.
     
  18. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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    I was watching 'Coast' the other week, and they visited a shipyard that was building the next generation of nuclear attack subs for the RN. According to them, the reactor could provide enough power to supply a good-sized city (I think Sheffield was the example used)
     

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