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English-Electric Lightning / Hotas Question  
User currently offlineBlackbird From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (8 years 9 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 3872 times:

I remember hearing that one of the interesting characteristics of the English Electric Lightning was it's use of HOTAS and a side-stick. In regards to this, did the English-Electric Lightning utilize FBW technology, or did it use ordinary mechanical-set-up?

If it did feature a mechanical set-up, why couldn't such a side-stick controller use FBW signalling and have a mechanical-signalling back-up for use on say a transport-category plane?

Andrea Kent

3 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlinePtrjong From Netherlands, joined Mar 2005, 4225 posts, RR: 16
Reply 1, posted (8 years 9 months 1 week 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 3863 times:

Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
HOTAS and a side-stick

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Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
did the English-Electric Lightning utilize FBW technology


Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
why couldn't such a side-stick controller use FBW signalling

Because it was built to a 1947 specification, and the last version first flew in 1965.

English Electric once built electric trams (streetcars). Not electric jets.


[Edited 2007-08-17 03:41:53]

The only difference between me and a madman is that I am not mad (Salvador Dali)
User currently offlineScouseflyer From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2006, 3472 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (8 years 9 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 3821 times:

Silly me, I mis-read the title as English Electric Lightening and HOTOL which is something entirely differant ! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HOTOL

User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined exactly 15 years ago today! , 13602 posts, RR: 76
Reply 3, posted (8 years 9 months 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 3696 times:

HOTAS is all about ergonomics, easing the task of pilots flying highly complex machines in operations that are often 'swing role'.

Lightning was built in a previous era, for one thing, to scramble then reach the missile range of the Soviet bombers attacking UK airspace, as fast as possible.
By missile range, meaning a few miles, for the two Firestreak tail chase, or later semi all-aspect Red Top, IR guided missiles.
Range, payload, were very low priorities.

That said, it was a fine aircraft, blunted like so many other post war UK military aircraft, by lack of development.
It only survived the 1957 Defence Review, that axed most military aircraft programmes for an intended nuclear deterrence orientated force of SAM's and IRBM's, because as the paper put it unfortunately it is too advanced in development.'
Development meaning the stage from essentially technology demonstrators, to P.1 prototypes.

But the '57 review axed the planned P.8, it's area ruled rear fuselage accommodating a new main landing gear, not retracting into the wings like the Lightnings built, hence more fuel and potential for weapon pylons.
As the '57 review was slowly rescinded after the real damage was done, BAC by the mid 60's, was designing upgraded Lightnings wing swing wings, further from that, swing wings with a new 'solid' nose and side intakes.
But by then, it was too late, the RN had picked the F.4, the cancellation of the over ambitious P.1154 supersonic VSTOL, meant F-4's were heading the RAF's way too.

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