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45 votes
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What's the point of using T-38 to instill flight proficiency in Space Shuttle pilots?

What the T-38 airplane provides NASA is currency and proficiency in high performance aircraft operations in a jet which has many of the same characteristics as the shuttle in this respect ie high wing ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
27 votes
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Is the T-38 wing strong enough to carry any weapons?

The T-38's wing is strong enough to carry weapons without a significant weight increase. Not because of any special design for that. It's just that any jet's wing is strong enough to carry an ...
Therac's user avatar
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19 votes

What's the point of using T-38 to instill flight proficiency in Space Shuttle pilots?

I flew the T-38 in pilot training. (They ended Vietnam and tossed most of us out before we could finish since they no longer needed pilots. Which also means I am now officially old.) Reasons to use ...
mewanning's user avatar
  • 191
15 votes

What could be the cause of an uncommanded roll at high speed?

I once went on-site to troubleshoot an airliner with an uncommanded roll problem. The operator had rigged this and rigged that and were in the process of ordering new aileron power control units, ...
John K's user avatar
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10 votes

What could be the cause of an uncommanded roll at high speed?

If this were a model aircraft with a wide speed range (like, say, a hand launch glider), I'd expect this to be a cross-trim problem. Generally, the rudder will have more authority at lower speeds, ...
Zeiss Ikon's user avatar
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9 votes

Is the T-38 wing strong enough to carry any weapons?

The wings are strong enough for a munition, because they hold the weight of the whole aircraft via the landing gear. Adding a few hundred pounds of missile, or a 500 lb bomb on each side, would not be ...
WPNSGuy's user avatar
  • 9,037
6 votes

What astronauts and/or pilots had their "own" T-38 for transportation and practice?

No pilot or astronaut has "their own aircraft". Not in any unit I've ever seen. Their name might be painted on the side of one, but they fly whatever the maintenance shop gives them for that ...
WPNSGuy's user avatar
  • 9,037
6 votes

Is the T-38 wing strong enough to carry any weapons?

There are plenty of things that do make a difference and "strength" isn't really enough of a discriminator. In particular, adding things to wings can cause divergent aerodynamic oscillation (...
BradHards's user avatar
  • 253
5 votes
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Will air in a shockwave flow outwards?

No. The shock is not high pressure. The shock is a jump in properties. The flow is higher pressure behind the shock than in front. Think of the shock as an artificial boundary where the properties ...
Rob McDonald's user avatar
  • 12.6k
5 votes

What could be the cause of an uncommanded roll at high speed?

If the flight control is a hydraulic system, have you changed the fluid recently, if yes you need to purge the system for air bubbles, otherwise you need to check the fluid quality for impurity.
user40476's user avatar
  • 1,797
4 votes

What is this trio of fins at the back of a T-38?

There are a couple of possibilities, both out of the T-38 Flight Operations Manual. It's a nozzle for a smoke generator. This was an option on the T-38 airplane to generate a smoke trail behind the ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
3 votes

What astronauts and/or pilots had their "own" T-38 for transportation and practice?

Over the years NASA has maintained a fairly sizable fleet of T-38's for use by the astronauts and the T-38 has been widely used by NASA as a training and proficiency aircraft as well as a chase plane. ...
Dave's user avatar
  • 101k
3 votes
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What happens when shockwaves interact?

Remember, shockwaves and expansion fans are all about turning the flow. The required turning can be observed from the boundary conditions (the walls). Each shock / fan exists to turn the flow from ...
Rob McDonald's user avatar
  • 12.6k
2 votes

Will air in a shockwave flow outwards?

It's not the air in the shockwave flowing in the direction of the vector, it's the energy being propagated in the form of a wave. Waves transfer energy through a media. The water in a wave that ...
Robert DiGiovanni's user avatar
2 votes
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Why do shockwaves extend past the body that created them?

You aren't going to believe this answer, but it is true! Think about a simple 2D diamond airfoil. We will think of this as an inviscid problem for now. The flow in region 1 is all parallel. Start ...
Rob McDonald's user avatar
  • 12.6k
2 votes

What is this trio of fins at the back of a T-38?

Several of the aircraft I have worked on have vortex generators just a head of the fuel dump area, especially if they're near the exhaust. Those do appear to be right about the fuel dump on that ...
LuftBier's user avatar
  • 609
2 votes

What's the point of using T-38 to instill flight proficiency in Space Shuttle pilots?

The general idea is to keep the pilot thinking like a pilot. Even ordinary pilots have to have 3 landings in the previous 90 days before they can fly with passengers. It's like warming up before ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
  • 13.3k
2 votes

What's the point of using T-38 to instill flight proficiency in Space Shuttle pilots?

Shuttle astronaut Mike Millane's autobiography, Riding Rockets, suggests that the mindset of flying a fast jet is a big factor, rather than the precise flight characteristics: NASA's simulators ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
2 votes

What astronauts and/or pilots had their "own" T-38 for transportation and practice?

While stationed at NAS Glenview in 1970, I had Hangar One watch duty late one summer night. I got a call to park an arriving NASA T-38 on the flight line. It was Gene Cernan by himself that exited ...
Dennis Stubee's user avatar
1 vote

What is the location of the CG on the T-38?

Unlike conventional aircraft (and older fighters), the CG location of the F-16 makes the airplane unstable (making the aircraft more nimble), requiring fly-by-wire and a flight control computer to ...
JetCityMatt's user avatar
  • 1,125
1 vote

What's the point of using T-38 to instill flight proficiency in Space Shuttle pilots?

Another reason for using the T-38 was simply logistics. Astronauts were required to travel quite a lot; their base was in Houston, but depending on assignments they had to visit contractors and other ...
bjelleklang's user avatar
  • 4,166
1 vote

What would prohibit a T-38 Talon from being certified in the Acrobatic category?

The short answer is the FAA has recently moved to a flight test basis for certification of civilian aerobatic aircraft. The average human body can withstand (https://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/...
jwzumwalt's user avatar
  • 11.5k

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