Aviation Photo #1286859: McDonnell Douglas F/A-18A Hornet - USA - Navy


Photo 4,260 of 4,263 by Steve Brimley
  • Joerg Amann
    USA - Navy
    McDonnell Douglas F/A-18A Hornet
    McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet
    McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet
    McDonnell Douglas
    0495/A409
    163106
    San Francisco
    California
    USA
    October 6, 2007
  • 600

Photo Details

Photo ID
#1286859
Views
256,390
Photographer
Airline
Manufacturer
Country
Accepted
November 03, 2007
Caption
Clearly visible shockwaves forming around the tail, under the engine intake and above the canopy as Blue Angels #5 performs a sneak pass at San Francisco Fleet Week 2007.
Width
1200px
Height
800px

Badges

Photographer's Choice
November 04, 2007

Photographer


Photos
222
Views
2.4M
Likes
6.9K
Joined
May 2007

Comments (99)

Anonymous
8 years ago
Looks like clear glass!!
very well done!!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Very nicely taken! Interesting to see the shockwaves in this way. Well done!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Amazing!
ub
Anonymous
8 years ago
Amazing shot!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Great pic. I don't recall ever seeing the sonic wave in clear air - without the usual accompanying condensation.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Thanks for this one!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Amazing shot you brought us!!!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Incredible, very useful to see where the shockwaves form also. Congratulations for this shot !
Anonymous
8 years ago
Amazing Picture, love the distortion.
Anonymous
8 years ago
I will be honest, that is the most amazing photo I have ever seen! Incredible work!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Never seen something like that before, just incredible!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Wow, fabolous shot. picture-perfect!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Never seen before ! Terrific shot !
Anonymous
8 years ago
I have never seen shockwaves caught on photo.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Absolutely incredible, very well done!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Beautiful how the lower shockwave, almost a perfect triangle, intersects the water at the point where the blast begins. A pictorial physics lesson! 5*
Anonymous
8 years ago
Best blue angels shot on the site, by far, and maybe the most amazing photo of an aircraft that I have ever seen...
Anonymous
8 years ago
It is a perfect shot of a f/a-18
Anonymous
8 years ago
This is scary as! Amazing shot!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Simply great shot... Shock wave so clearly seen.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Stunning photo! I've never saw shockwaves like this way. 5 stars.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Never seen anything like this before. Just amazing!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Great picture! I've seen the video as well and it is just spectacular!
Anonymous
8 years ago
7 stars: look at boats - before and after shock wave! This is amazing!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Simply amazing! common shockwaves can be seen by an pressure cam, but in this peace of art it can be seen just naturally!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Stunning,extrordinary shot.
Looks like an air tunnel Schlieren photo.
Just great, thanks!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Hands down the best photo I've ever seen on airliners.net - well done!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Excellent shot in motion. This picture appeals to me how fast this aircraft flies. I can imagine perfectly the sound of the engine, roaring into my ears.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Best view of high speed aerodynamics I have seen
Anonymous
8 years ago
Damn! reading about shock waves and calculating them is one thing, seeing it in real life is just amazing! 5 stars!!
Anonymous
8 years ago
One of the most beautiful pics ever! 5 stars! Everything is perfect.
Anonymous
8 years ago
My Jaw literally dropped on seeing this. AMAZING shot!
Anonymous
8 years ago
I've never seen a shockwave pictured like this before. Beautifully done; the moment was captured and the focus is excellent.
Anonymous
8 years ago
This website isn't capturing nationality of the message-poster correctly.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Absoulutely Mind-Blowing shot! It appears to going through a time warp!
Anonymous
8 years ago
The Matrix?!
Anonymous
8 years ago
WOW! I've been "collecting" shots like this for some time but never seen anything like this one. Most pictures like these shows moisture formed by the shock wave - I assume this is the actual shock wave. Unique and intriguing!
Anonymous
8 years ago
The capture of the shockwave is unbellevable!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Fantastic shot! How far away from the aircraft were you and what kind of lens were you using?
Anonymous
8 years ago
Holy cow, that is a perfectly captured shot!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Holy cow - what a shot. Thanks Joerg- You just made my day.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Physics at its best!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Sweet! I miss seeing the Angels, having lived & attended school in Pensacola in the early '80s.
Anonymous
8 years ago
I have looked at photos on this site for more than three years. I have never seen anything like it. I thought this shock wave was only visible in a wind tunnel. In addition the plane seems to pull a wave.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Congratulations, best shot
Anonymous
8 years ago
This great photo shows transonic airflow around the Blue Angels F-18 with superb clarity. Unlike many similar photos - popular as computer wallpaper - that reveal only condensation in the expansions following the shock waves, here we see the shocks themselves by way of background distortion. This works best when the background has strong light-dark boundaries, as in the case of the white boats against the dark water. The shock wave pattern is complicated over the wings and tail, but note the single shock which terminates a local supersonic-flow region generated by the canopy. Also the white water following the shock wave system is caused (I think) by the fact that moving shock waves drag an airflow behind them that is strong enough in this case to whip the water into froth. Finally, the shocks above and below the aircraft tail have a distinctly “glassy” appearance. To me this is the most fascinating thing about this photo. It is a psychological effect, arising from our experience in seeing the world through antique mouth-blown window-panes that have such streaks or striations in them. On those rare occasions when you can see them, shock waves in air look just like streaks in glass. Both are invisible unless revealed by background distortion. Here, the background distortion is a form of the “Schlieren” optical technique, where the word “Schlieren” itself is German for streaks such as those in antique glass. (Comment by Gary Settles, Penn State University.)
Anonymous
8 years ago
Great plane neat setting
Anonymous
8 years ago
The compression waves at trans-sonic speed are very well articulated and captured in the swoop-roster tail over the water- amazing detail and composition of the forces at work as welll as vivid color are contrast
Anonymous
8 years ago
This is just amazing you can even see the trans-sonic airflow coming around the plane and look at the water following after it
Anonymous
8 years ago
Actually being able to freeze the visible airflow in transonic range is very unique and rare
Anonymous
8 years ago
Never imagined it would be so!
Anonymous
8 years ago
Wow, this picture is amazing. I never imagined that it was actually visible in this way
Anonymous
8 years ago
Quite simply a remarkable photo joerg. the way you captured the compression waves is amazing. keep up the good work.
Anonymous
8 years ago
I've seen a lot of trans-sonic images, but the clarity of the entire shock field captured in this shot is truly remarkable.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Espectacular
Anonymous
8 years ago
It is different shot
Anonymous
8 years ago
Too Cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
Anonymous
8 years ago
Very impressive photo showing lots of shockwaves around the plane. I guess quite rare to capture a plane at that high speed close to the ground.
Anonymous
8 years ago
Beautiful picture! It can be clearly observed the complex pattern of expansion-compression waves at transonic speed over the critical mach number (prandtl-meyer fan followed by normal shock wave).
Anonymous
8 years ago
Simply unbelievable. I am speechless to see this shot.
Physics at its best.
Anonymous
8 years ago
The aircraft moving a hight speed is pushing the air leading to layers of air with different density, hence the 'lens' effect. The heavy detailed background just makes it more obvious but enough with the physics... GREAT SHOT!
Anonymous
8 years ago
It's a glorious example of a Schlieren photograph taken without any of the usual trappings required to take such photographs. This is a better than once in a life time shot.
Anonymous
8 years ago
What a fine detailed pcture showing the immense power of such an aircraft. Physics for specilists !
Anonymous
8 years ago
This photo captures the essence of what this aircraft does best...breaks the laws of physics!
Anonymous
7 years ago
Cool
Anonymous
7 years ago
Nothing short of superb! Keep up the good work!
Anonymous
7 years ago
The F/A18 is in focus. The pilot is clearly visible. The great part is the shock wave. The aircraft is at or near mach 1 and the air is really compressed. I like the way it distorts the boats in the background. I wish I had taken this shot. Great wake too.
Anonymous
7 years ago
First, a picture of a Blue Angels F/A-18 wave skimming is great, but with shockwaves as well - simply amazing.
Anonymous
7 years ago
Absolutely fantastic! Really beautiful!
Anonymous
7 years ago
Good Golly Miss Molly!
Anonymous
7 years ago
Awesome photo
Anonymous
7 years ago
Great photo
Anonymous
7 years ago
Cool!i wish i was a blue angel pilot.
Anonymous
7 years ago
Shocking picture!
Anonymous
7 years ago
That is magnificent.. well done
Anonymous
6 years ago
HOLY COW! This is just the most amazing picture I've ever seen of a sneak pass. The way you can see the shockwaves is truly amazing! Congratulations with this capture.
Anonymous
6 years ago
Panning shots are always tricky - especially at this speed, yet your target is crystal clear! Amazing work :)
Anonymous
6 years ago
Truly an amazing photo. Looks like it's comming out of a wormhole. Incredible clarity.
Anonymous
6 years ago
Wow!!!
Anonymous
6 years ago
This reminds me of the TV series by Richard Hammond about how our eyes don't pick up certain things which are there. This is the perfect demonstration of it. Amazing shot!
Anonymous
6 years ago
Back from the future!
Anonymous
6 years ago
WOW ................
Anonymous
5 years ago
Excellent detail, amazing composition!
Anonymous
5 years ago
So Perfect!!!!! All the details!!!
Anonymous
5 years ago
Awesome detail of the sonic wave in this sneak pass of Blue Angel #5 in San Francisco Fleet Week 2007!
Anonymous
5 years ago
In a word AWESOME!!!!!
Anonymous
5 years ago
Capturing the shockwave without the (now) ubiquitous vapour cloud has made for a once in a lifetime shot. Truly exceptional work!
Anonymous
5 years ago
This is perfect
Anonymous
4 years ago
Taking pictures of high speed jets it's complicated but almost sea level it's really amazing , and the Blue Angels are so unique for that
Anonymous
4 years ago
Top class
Anonymous
4 years ago
Great!!!man!
Anonymous
4 years ago
OMG! Incredible! should be in top 50!
Anonymous
4 years ago
Wonderfull shot!
Anonymous
4 years ago
Only i can thank the photographer for his image.
Anonymous
3 years ago
GREAT PHOTO
Anonymous
3 years ago
Shockwave Detail superb ! to pan so fast well awesome shot!!
Anonymous
2 years ago
Once in a liftime photo. Superb
Anonymous
2 years ago
Through the sound barrier....heck, it looks like he's about to go through the TIME barrier!
Anonymous
2 years ago
Wow those vertical tails......just, WOW. Just think if they could eliminate the vertical tails and use thrust vectoring only. Huge savings.