OPERATION REDWING. Project 5.4. In-Flight Participation of a B-57B,
WRIGHT AIR DEVELOPMENT DIV WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH
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This project was establihsed to determine the response of the structure of the B-57 aircraft in flight to thermal, gust, and overpressure effects of large-yield nuclear explosions primarily for the purpose of defining the delivery capabilities of the aircraft and secondarily to obtain basic information relative to the thermoelastic response of the aircraft structure. In order to obtain the necessary data, the aircraft was instrumented to measure the overpressure, gust, and thermal inputs, and the response of various components of the structure to these inputs. The instrumented aircraft was positioned at predetermined points such that design limits would be approached. A maximum skin temperature of 400 F was the criterion for determination of the amount of thermal radiation which the B-57B could absorb without sustaining permanent buckling of the skin, and 600 F was the criterion for the maximum safe limit. With respect to gust, the aircraft was limited by 100 percent of the design limit shear at Wing Station 123. The aircraft experienced loads of from 14 to approximately 61 of the design limit load. During Shot Apache, the aircraft was positioned for both overpressure and a high horizontal gust component. The results substantiated the theoretical alleviating effect of the horizontal gust component.