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Eject! Eject!

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We see how the technology was adapted when the prospect of crashing in North Vietnam was sometimes preferable to ejecting and risking capture; what happens to the body when it is catapulted from an aircraft under great force; how an ejectee can be rescued from enemy territory.

The fact that he’d never designed or built a plane and had never even flown did not seem to deter him.During 15 years service in the Royal Air Force John Nichol served as a technician and, after being commissioned from the ranks, as a Tornado Navigator in both the Air Defence and Ground Attack roles. On active duty during the first Gulf War in 1991, his Tornado bomber was shot down during a mission over Iraq. In Germany, Heinkel had fitted their turbojet-powered fight He-280 with a catapult seat escape system, and on January 13 1942, the Luftwaffe’s Wolfgang “Bombo” Schenck became the first man to use an ejection seat in an emergency. If you don’t recognise the name, you will certainly remember the face: John Nichol was the navigator on the RAF Tornado shot down over Iraqi territory on the first day of the First Gulf War in January 1991.

Sadly, although I chose it because I was fascinated by modern ejection-seat technology , it was the human stories that achieved most impact on me. The story is chronological from the early days of the seats being developed- a ripping yarn in itself, with some fantastic characters testing them- and then moves forward through several aerial conflicts, and other incidents in between. The 103 third parties who use cookies on this service do so for their purposes of displaying and measuring personalized ads, generating audience insights, and developing and improving products. He has made a number of TV documentaries with Second World War veterans, written for national newspapers and magazines, and is a widely quoted commentator on military affairs.In 1928, he moved to Denham in Buckinghamshire, where he hung a sign on the front of an old linoleum factory, “Martin’s Aircraft Works”.

Lastly, as I began the book I thought that this would make for an excellent recommendation for my friend’s son-in-law who flies off an American carrier and is due home on leave at Christmas. To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average. The events in war, about the way the Vietnam pilots were treated for instance was beaten only by the dreadful, dreadful injuries that they used to receive as a result of ejecting. As the author has had to be diplomatic in some areas, feelings run deep and memories are long, the book has a feel of 'now it can be told' just not completely. He has served around the world from the Nevada Desert to the Middle East and Norway to the Falkland Islands.I’ve read much of the author’s work, and while not wanting to discredit his earlier productions in any way, his more recent books have really stepped up to the next level as his writing style has evolved. No one would ever want to have to use an ejection seat, but thank goodness some people have – and have lived to tell the tale. begins with Nichol interviewing Lancaster, whose story serves as an important reminder that, as well as being a book about engineering, this is fundamentally a book about “what it means to be given another chance”. Come down the travelators, exit Sainsbury's, turn right and follow the pedestrianised walkway to Crown Walk and turn right - and Coles will be right in front of you.

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