Dec 272014

“Ignition! An informal history of liquid rocket propellants” was written by John D. Clark and published by Rutgers University in 1972. It is a classic text on the subject… a text which has not been reprinted since except by some print-on-demand types. If you find a copy of this book for less than several hundred dollars, you’ve lucked out. It’s a good read, both informative and entertaining.

Fortunately, someone went to the bother of scanning the whole thing and posting it as a PDF. I’m honestly unclear about the copyright implications, if any… but the scan has been openly and freely available for some years, so…

Hmmm. It seems that I’ve completely flaked out on the PDF reviews for quite a while. And nobody said anything. Makes me wonder if maybe there’s just no interest in these? Shrug, oh well, moving on…

As always: check out the APR Patreon for info on how to help, and how to get rewards.


 Posted by at 2:31 pm
Dec 262014

There was a delay getting the December rewards out, and a further delay in putting this notification together that the rewards are available… so it might be only a short-ish time before these are gone, replaced by the *January* rewards. So if these look of interest… act fast!

PDF Document: “Design Study for an Air Force Model F-82E Airplane Modified to a Ground Attack Aircraft with Allison XT-38 Turbo Prop Engine,” a North American Aviation report from 1948. This was not for a simple engine swap-out… the cockpits were moved forward and the engines located behind them, driving the props with long shafts.

PDF Document: “SAM-D Air Defense Weapon System,” a 1973 US Army description document of what would become the Patriot missile system.

Large Format Diagram: a large-format full-color (w/bonus grayscale versions) diagram of the X-20 Dyna Soar. Very detailed and clear. Looks great on a wall (believe me on that!)

CAD Diagram: Boeing Model 853-21 “Quiet Bird” a 1961 design study for a low radar cross section (i.e. stealthy) research aircraft.

2014-12 patreon ad

If you would like to access these items and support the cause of acquiring and sharing these pieces of aerospace history, please visit my Patreon page and consider contributing.


 Posted by at 3:28 pm
Dec 192014

In the early/mid 1970s the US aerospace industry studied alternate fuels for aircraft. This included liquid hydrogen… a pain to work with, but it makes a great fuel and can be processed easily out of natural gas, less easily out of coal, and with a whole lot of electricity out of water. But it is extremely cold and extremely low density. Thus when Lockheed (apparently half-heartedly) looked at an LH2 version of the C-141, it looked like this:

lh2 c-141

Under normal conditions, wingtip fuel tanks that vast would snap the wings right off, but LH2 is so light and fluffy that this aircraft would weigh *less* than a fully fueled standard C-141.

 Posted by at 6:48 pm
Dec 172014

The latest releases in the “US Aerospace Projects” line (see the full library HERE):

US Bomber Projects #12 contents:

  • Boeing Model 464-41: A turboprop B-52 predecessor
  • Boeing “Big Bird”: a long-durational, low-speed, low-altitude missile carrying loiterer
  • Douglas MX-2091-E: A 1950’s canard configured missile carrier
  • Boeing Model 701-238: A supersonic design on the road to the B-59
  • Northrop Nuclear Flying Wing: Atomic power with two crew pods
  • Martin Model 223-12: the final design in the XB-48 design series
  • Rockwell MRCC: An airplane that could be tossed into space atop an RSRM
  • Lockheed CL-820-8: A Mach 3 variable-geometry design

USBP #12 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:







New: American Nuclear Explosive Devices #01

This is a prototype issue for what may become a series but which I hope to turn into a Real Book. The plan is to eventually document via accurate and detailed diagrams every nuclear explosive device produced by the US (obviously some are a little lean on declassified data). This includes bombs, Re-Entry Vehicles, a few actual “physics packages” and some stand-alone test devices. ANED01 contains information and diagrams of the first three atom bombs worked on by the US: the Thin Man and Little Boy air-droppable bombs and the Trinity “Gadget” test device. The American Nuclear Explosive Devices webpage is HERE.

ANED01 is formatted for 11X17, so the diagrams are good and large.

ANED #01 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:




 Posted by at 11:33 am
Dec 092014

Ever since I started working on Aerospace Projects Review in the late 1990’s, people have asked from time to time if I planned on putting out an April Fools edition,or covering fictional designs, something along those lines. And I have always shot that concept down, because one thing I don’t want to do is contribute to confusion of mythology. Because even the most transparent fakery can be believed by far too many people (witness the patently absurd modern fiction called “Die Glocke”).

One of the better known “fakes” that has sometimes been understood to be real is the “Klagenfurt Klf 255.” This was originally published in the French aviation magazine “Fana de l’Aviation” as an April Fools gag in 1973. Supposedly a wartime German design for a rocket powered interceptor, the diagrams are actually reasonably convincing, as are the pre-Photoshop fake photos… but it was nevertheless pure fiction.

klf 255

Some years back someone sent me a photocopy of the original article. I’ve scanned it in PDF format and posted it to the APR Patreon for all patrons (this means as cheap as $0.75/month). Enjoy. And remember… It’s A Faaaaaaaaaake.


If you would like to access these items and support the cause of acquiring and sharing these pieces of aerospace history, please visit my Patreon page and consider contributing.


 Posted by at 1:04 am