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Member Since 04 May 2005
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In Topic: A Fort Worth Regional Airport

12 July 2012 - 03:05 PM

I don't see VTOL having an influence on normal passenger flights. It is a very inefficient way to get off the ground. Where land is available, conventional takeoff will remain the normal way aircraft get off the ground.

Suborbital will make a dent, though. If an aircraft is free of atmospheric drag, it can get around the earth much more quickly than current aircraft. The shuttle takes 90 minutes to orbit the earth (give or take). A craft that can get up close to that can get around the world in a small fraction of the time a normal flight takes. That was the whole point of the National Aerospace Plan (NASP) program back in the 1980s. Too bad it got canceled.

All correct. VTOL is pretty limited to the tonnage it can get airborne from initial lifting. As of today, suborbital is limited by $/tonnage that can be lifted. As an interesting aside, the RR Olympus engines that were employed by Concorde were actually more efficient at significant altitude and the higher the speed that they were traveling. Whereas the first part is generally true of all turbine aircraft the latter is a little counter intuitive. The problem was with Concorde as is still true today that at ground level (sea to ~ 30,000'ish; of course trying to get Concorde off a runway fully loaded at really high elevation points like El Alto would require runways in excess of 5 miles in length if it would get airborne at all) those types of engines are very costly to operate to get the weight airborne.

The last problem relative to suborbital flying lies with the actual definition of "flying". In essence, when you get too high the air molecules are so far apart that the "stickiness" of the air required to generate sufficient lift over the airfoils to maintain "flight" becomes impossible. At that point, a propulsion system which can maintain a higher thrust than the craft's weight is required and the craft thus ceases to "fly" but travels more akin to the characteristics of a ballistic missile. Such a propulsion system for a commercial aircraft is today beyond expensive and the government's experiments with scramjet and ramjet technologies have been sadly spotty. And then lastly from a commercial standpoint (passengers) you have the inertia question to answer relative to the acceleration phase of such a flight up to speeds like Mach 7+: it would not be a very pleasant experience for any but the best prepared (trained) traveler.

In Topic: A Fort Worth Regional Airport

11 July 2012 - 03:47 PM

Last paragraph first. There are less people than you would think that hold the view that the US can "no longer be the policeman of the world"..... As to how the US continues to preserve local peace and "police" rogue nation outbursts in the future.....But back to the main point of the thread; a west side airport on the model of Love or Hobby...

Quick replies offered relative to my normal takes: To your first paragraph: President Eisenhower warned against the military industrial complex. He rightfully predicted that politicians would use the military for their own political agenda and pork. Eisenhower was a professional military man and preferred to be remembered as that as to being remembered as a politician. The DOD is staffed by thousands of professional military people cut from the same cloth as Eisenhower. I have to believe and trust their judgment about how best to defend the homeland while at the same time, adjusting to the new reality that their unlimited funding cannot continue into the future.

We ought not fear rogue nations, only rogue individuals. The war against rogue individuals is not won with raw brute strength or asymmetric warfare, but rather, sophisticated and unparallel intelligence, surveillance and smart weaponry.

The military enjoys the highest public approval of anything that the government does for good reason: the trust that the public has in the military. I trust the strategic advice of our military because our military does not have or should not favor any local political agenda, only the goal of defending the homeland.

As for your second paragraph: Agree, agree, agree!

Not sure I would totally agree with you on Ike's message; a little too Oliver Stoneish I think. But others can read for themselves relative to the"whole" of the context of that over quoted and in my opinion misunderstood part of his farewell speech...

Farewell Address
President Dwight D. Eisenhower
17 January 1961

Good evening, my fellow Americans: First, I should like to express my gratitude to the radio and television networks for the opportunity they have given me over the years to bring reports and messages to our nation. My special thanks go to them for the opportunity of addressing you this evening.

Three days from now, after a half century of service of our country, I shall lay down the responsibilities of office as, in traditional and solemn ceremony, the authority of the Presidency is vested in my successor.

This evening I come to you with a message of leave-taking and farewell, and to share a few final thoughts with you, my countrymen.

Like every other citizen, I wish the new President, and all who will labor with him, Godspeed. I pray that the coming years will be blessed with peace and prosperity for all.

Our people expect their President and the Congress to find essential agreement on questions of great moment, the wise resolution of which will better shape the future of the nation.

My own relations with Congress, which began on a remote and tenuous basis when, long ago, a member of the Senate appointed me to West Point, have since ranged to the intimate during the war and immediate post-war period, and finally to the mutually interdependent during these past eight years.

In this final relationship, the Congress and the Administration have, on most vital issues, cooperated well, to serve the nation well rather than mere partisanship, and so have assured that the business of the nation should go forward. So my official relationship with Congress ends in a feeling on my part, of gratitude that we have been able to do so much together.

We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has witnessed four major wars among great nations. Three of these involved our own country. Despite these holocausts America is today the strongest, the most influential and most productive nation in the world. Understandably proud of this pre-eminence, we yet realize that America's leadership and prestige depend, not merely upon our unmatched material progress, riches and military strength, but on how we use our power in the interests of world peace and human betterment.

Throughout America's adventure in free government, such basic purposes have been to keep the peace; to foster progress in human achievement, and to enhance liberty, dignity and integrity among peoples and among nations.

To strive for less would be unworthy of a free and religious people.

Any failure traceable to arrogance or our lack of comprehension or readiness to sacrifice would inflict upon us a grievous hurt, both at home and abroad.

Progress toward these noble goals is persistently threatened by the conflict now engulfing the world. It commands our whole attention, absorbs our very beings. We face a hostile ideology global in scope, atheistic in character, ruthless in purpose, and insidious in method. Unhappily the danger it poses promises to be of indefinite duration. To meet it successfully, there is called for, not so much the emotional and transitory sacrifices of crisis, but rather those which enable us to carry forward steadily, surely, and without complaint the burdens of a prolonged and complex struggle with liberty the stake. Only thus shall we remain, despite every provocation, on our charted course toward permanent peace and human betterment.

Crises there will continue to be. In meeting them, whether foreign or domestic, great or small, there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become the miraculous solution to all current difficulties. A huge increase in the newer elements of our defenses; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic expansion in basic and applied research these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel.

But each proposal must be weighed in light of a broader consideration; the need to maintain balance in and among national programs balance between the private and the public economy, balance between the cost and hoped for advantages balance between the clearly necessary and the comfortably desirable; balance between our essential requirements as a nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual; balance between the actions of the moment and the national welfare of the future. Good judgment seeks balance and progress; lack of it eventually finds imbalance and frustration.

The record of many decades stands as proof that our people and their Government have, in the main, understood these truths and have responded to them well in the face of threat and stress.

But threats, new in kind or degree, constantly arise.

Of these, I mention two only.

A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction.

Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.

Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.

This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence economic, political, even spiritual is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

In this revolution, research has become central, it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.

Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society's future, we you and I, and our government must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering for, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without asking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.

Down the long lane of the history yet to be written America knows that this world of ours, ever growing smaller, must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be, instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.

Such a confederation must be one of equals. The weakest must come to the conference table with the same confidence as do we, protected as we are by our moral, economic, and military strength. That table, though scarred by many past frustrations, cannot be abandoned for the certain agony of the battlefield.

Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose. Because this need is so sharp and apparent I confess that I lay down my official responsibilities in this field with a definite sense of disappointment. As one who has witnessed the horror and the lingering sadness of war as one who knows that another war could utterly destroy this civilization which has been so slowly and painfully built over thousands of years I wish I could say tonight that a lasting peace is in sight.

Happily, I can say that war has been avoided. Steady progress toward our ultimate goal has been made. But, so much remains to be done. As a private citizen, I shall never cease to do what little I can to help the world advance along that road.

So in this my last good night to you as your President I thank you for the many opportunities you have given me for public service in war and peace. I trust that in that service you find some things worthy; as for the rest of it, I know you will find ways to improve performance in the future.

You and I my fellow citizens need to be strong in our faith that all nations, under God, will reach the goal of peace with justice. May we be ever unswerving in devotion to principle, confident but humble with power, diligent in pursuit of the Nations' great goals.

To all the peoples of the world, I once more give expression to America's prayerful and continuing aspiration:

We pray that peoples of all faiths, all races, all nations, may have their great human needs satisfied; that those now denied opportunity shall come to enjoy it to the full; that all who yearn for freedom may experience its spiritual blessings; that those who have freedom will understand, also, its heavy responsibilities; that all who are insensitive to the needs of others will learn charity; that the scourges of poverty, disease and ignorance will be made to disappear from the earth, and that, in the goodness of time, all peoples will come to live together in a peace guaranteed by the binding force of mutual respect and love.

Now, on Friday noon, I am to become a private citizen. I am proud to do so. I look forward to it.

Thank you, and good night.

Source: US Government Archives

In Topic: Attracting Ryanair to Meacham

11 July 2012 - 01:24 PM

No it's not.

Virgin Galactic service from Terminal D to the moon is more inevitable...

Might your reply be referring to this comment posted by David Love (7/10/12): "It's only a matter of time before Meacham begins providing more services".

The one thing that I believe is inevitable is a ongoing, mandated review of the entire US Armed Forcesand that the mission of the for Carswell NAS/JRB will always be subject to review and change. It is inevitable that Fort Worth prepares itself for change.

Yes. I hit wrong reply; not accustomed to new forum outline.

In Topic: A Fort Worth Regional Airport

11 July 2012 - 01:23 PM

I would agree with just about every point you have made save for one. Infrastructure.....As to the inevitability of the JRB being significantly affected in any "downsizing" ....

Yossarian, I have quickly come to appreciate your seemingly broad based knowledge and insight regarding the aviation industry. Your information is very useful.

At some point, the country must begin to rebuild its infrastructure. I think new transportation projects will be essential to a vibrant economy and to Fort Worth as it approaches 1 million residents. Upgrading the current infrastructure at Carswell is not an obstacle, but is a matter of will as is currently being demonstrated by the significant upgrading of both Love Field and Houston Hobby. If anything Fort Worth would be ahead by having something to improve upon rather than having to start from scratch.

As for the current political situation in Washington, a change in administration will hardly change the geo-political landscape. The threats are different than when there were two or more superpowers and a divided Europe. Downsizing of the Military will be almost certainly force upon the country do to two principle factors: the type of military threat to the country; and the increasing needs of an aging population. It is generally agreed these days that the U.S. can no longer be the Policeman of the World. Some what off subject, but hopefully an answer to "JRB moot".

Keep Fort Worth folksy

Last paragraph first. There are less people than you would think that hold the view that the US can "no longer be the policeman of the world". By and large history has indicated that a "policeman" is indeed needed and that such role has best been played by liberal democracies in the modern era (1700-today: not much of a need for one until then anyway as most of the world was disconnected and regional hegemony was controlled by bi-polar interests). For more on the history of such arrangements, I would recommend a book by the historian Arthur Herman titled "To Rule the Waves". As to how the US continues to preserve local peace and "police" rogue nation outbursts in the future, I would agree with Thomas P.M. Barnett's analysis that our military needs to become more littoral as opposed to blue water as major power wars are probably a thing of the past. That being said, such a military need not necessarily be smaller but does need to be significantly more integrated between the branches which actually argues in Joint Reserve Bases' favor going forward. Also, just because from a hypothetical standpoint "Carswell" could be abandoned by military ops does not necessarily translate into the economic doomsday you intimate in that I don't think such an abandonment would remove the true economic engine out there - Lockheed.

But back to the main point of the thread; a west side airport on the model of Love or Hobby. For those arguing against the need based on carrying capacity; consider the following: The Walsh ranch development is finally going to break ground in the next few years which will only exacerbate growth in eastern Parker and western tarrant counties. The SW parkway will be done by then which will have the effect on Johnson County (Burleson/Cleburn) that the Dallas North Tollway had on Plano/Frisco (just fly over that area now and you can see the growth already taking shape without the new road). It is completely plausible that by 2020 or 2025 that the population of the western/southwestern part of the Metroplex who would find it easier to commute to a "Carswell" airport (I would recommend FW re-name it "back" to Amon Carter as a middle finger to dallas) rather than DFW much less Love for hops to Houston/San Antonio/etc. will approach 350-400K+. That is a market twice the size of Midland/Odessa and WN serves four destinations from there with 737s not to mention service from both AA Eagle) and UA. Another stat to consider for the naysayers relative to having three commercial airports in the Metroplex; by 2020 given present population growth estimates, the Metroplex will have a population well over 7.5 million if not approaching 8 million. That is the population roughly of the greater Los Angeles area in the late sixties to early 70s give or take a few hundred thousand on either side and the LA area at that time was/is almost the same size geographically and had in 1970 commercial service available from 5 airports (LAX, LGB, BUR, ONT, and SNA), granted its primary airport was/is smaller in size but today demonstrates the capacity to pass more passengers yearly that does DFW.

In Topic: Attracting Ryanair to Meacham

11 July 2012 - 06:25 AM

.... Interestingly, Mesa's original plan for Meacham was to develop it into a sort of mirror network similar to Southwest's at Love but with the added benefit that it would not be hampered by the constrictions of the Wright amendment due to the 50 seat nature of the CRJ200. Both the HOU and SAT routes were profitable by the time they picked up tent, but not enough so to counter the other offer. Had they stayed, there is some argument that FTW would have at least regular service to all the major cities in Texas today and perhaps 1 or 2 daily departures to such environs as MSY, ABQ, OKC, DEN, and maybe even LA, SF or DC.

I believe those air routes can be profitable today and in the future if Fort Worth would only take a chance. And welcome to my team!

Breaking News: Today Delta Express(Regional) announce that it will have 5 daily flights between Dallas Love Field and Atlanta, GA.

Keep Fort Worth folksy

No it's not.

Virgin Galactic service from Terminal D to the moon is more inevitable...