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Crazy Russian Airplane Stunt

by robstak / July 27, 2009 6:21 AM PDT
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0-M-G! hmm...I don't buy it...
by shmody / July 28, 2009 4:26 AM PDT

0-M-G! hmm...I don't buy it...
I'm not sure I buy this - Mach 2 seems way, WAY too fast for this to be real (and for the navigator to have survived).

--Shalin

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Nope
by n74jw / July 29, 2009 7:24 AM PDT

The human body could not take the heat and pressure it would withstand at Mach 2+. I would be surprised if the ejection system even worked at that speed. The canopy would disintegrate, and shrapnel the air-frame's fuselage. The ejecting pilot would be met with a flesh-splitting wall of air that would break every bone exposed to the air stream. Terminal velocity? If you were to make it out and clear the aircraft without being bi-sected by the tails, you would be falling at a speed, starting at mach 2 and getting faster the further you go down. The parachute would never slow you down at that rate of descent.

A Russian claim of a Mig-25 pilot ejecting after his fighter lost total control during the 1980's. Rumor has it the aircraft suffered a control reversal and started to disintegrate due to the excessive g-forces. The pilot ejected at around 60,000' (11 miles up g/t) ASL and at an airspeed of Mach 2.5+. He landed more than twenty miles away from the wreckage, with minor injuries. Yeah, yeah...

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(NT) so was that cgi??
by robstak / July 29, 2009 10:10 AM PDT
In reply to: Nope
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Not necessarily
by n74jw / July 29, 2009 11:06 AM PDT
In reply to: so was that cgi??

The footage certainly looks like a live ejection, but at normal speeds. Aircraft manufacturers do actually have to test these things, and record how they operate. You don't want to have the first time an ejection seat is tested, to be when you need it the most. Two things about the picture that seem off.

1. The flames coming out of the seat's rocket, there is no smoke. At that speed and altitude, the gases would condense almost instantly. The flames shooting straight into the cockpit would certainly takeout the circuit-breakers located aft of the ejecting crew man.

2. The Russians are pretty unorthodox when it comes to their testing parameters, but I find it tough to believe they would sacrifice a multi-million dollar fighter for a movie stunt. What insurance company would underwrite that? Besides ejection seat tests are usually held in aircraft where each pilot has their own canopy. The pictured Sukhoi has a single canopy for both pilots. What if this didn't work out as planned, which happens more than appreciated? I can't see a Russian commander sacrificing the plane and pilot for such a stunt.

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