I have read that even with the accute raw material shortages and rationing that went on during WWII, anything needed for the Manhattan project was was delivered on a silver platter. It was understood that if the United States failed to create a working atomic bomb before the Germans or the Japanese we would likely lose the war. Within the Manhattan project, nothing was given a higher priority than the special modifications that were needed to be made to standard B-29 bombers which would enable them to drop atomic weapons. For that reason these modifications were code named "Silverplate". Pictured here and preserved for history is the Enola Gay which dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima Japan, the effects of which probably killed between 90,000 and 166,000 people while helping to end WWII and probably saving 1 million American lives.
to my personal photography blog. I specialize in making unique and highly detailed photographs. Notice I said making and not taking. Yes I take photos but a lot of time and work is involved in pushing and punishing the pixels in my images to achieve the look I like.
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Can't we all just get along?
Entries in Udvar Hazy Center (11)
The Space Shuttle Enterprise in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar at the Smithsonian's Udvar Hazy Center Museum. Wow that was a mouthful. It's really quite amazing to walk into this hanger and see a space shuttle parked right in front of you. Even if that shuttle has never been in space. This was a test vehicle and was flown off the back of a specially modified 747. Astronaut and Enterprise test pilot John Young once mentioned that the Enterprise had the gliding characteristics of a brick. More Udvar Hazy Center images here.
The Russian MiG-21 "Fishbed" Fighter/Interceptor in the foreground led an interesting life and must have made quite a journey. "Acquired" by the CIA at the height of the cold war, it was transported to a secret airfield run by the U.S. Navy. There it was test flown by American pilots to discover its secrets and weaknesses. Later as part of a highly classified project called "Have Donut", it along with other Russian aircraft participated in mock air combat to train American Naval aviators how to defeat this aircraft in the skies over North Vietnam. The aircraft you see behind the silver MiG is the American F-4 Phantom II.
The Mach 3+ SR-71 Blackbird greets guests to the Udvar Hazy Air and Space Museum at Dulles International Airport, Chantilly Virginia. This 10 shot HDR sequence was taken using my Gorillapod Focus camera support system. Udvar Hazy does not allow tripods but the guards seemed unsure what to say about my articulated wonder.
Udvar Hazy Museum's SR-71 Blackbird spy plane.
Positioned front and center, this aircraft greets all visitors to the National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center located at Dulles International Airport in Chantilly, Virginia.
No other aircraft in history operated globally in hostile airspace as successfully and for a longer period of time than the SR-71. No aircraft was ever lost to hostile fire.
On its last flight Lt. Col. Ed Yielding and Lt. Col. Joseph Vida set a speed record by flying from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., in 1 hour and 4 minutes averaging 2,124 miles per hour. Upon landing, the air force donated the aircraft to the Smithsonian.
As I was walking around the space hanger, I noticed a flight of stairs with a platform at the top that was 15-20 feet above the floor. There wasn't a sign that said "Museum Staff Only" so I decided to go up there and take another HDR series from there. The Udvar Hazy Center does not allow tripods but I was able to use my gorillapod without anyone objecting.
I was amazed when Kathy and I first entered the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center near Washington Dulles International Airport. Directly before us was the incredible SR-71 Blackbird and in the distance beyond was the Space Shuttle Enterprise. Being a big fan of space flight, I just couldn't believe I was actually standing in front of this incredible (and huge) piece of American history.
This was the first Space Shuttle orbiter vehicle. It was built for flight test in the atmosphere and never flew in space. It was carried to a launch altitude on the back of a specially modified 747 where it was released and then it glided down to land at Edwards Air Force Base.