Warbirds and Airshows
By David D Jackson

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 Knoxville, TN   MCAS Cherry Point, NC   Saint Louis, MO   CFB Trenton, ONT   Thunder Over Michigan, Bellevue, MI   Marion, IN   Waukegan, IL   NAS Patuxent River, MD
NAS Patuxent River Air Expo Warbird Photo Review
Warbirds at NAS Patuxent River, MD - October 29-30, 2016   Photos taken Saturday, 10-29-2016.

The Air Expo at NAS Patuxent River has been on my list of shows to visit ever since the Blue Angels scheduled it in December of 2014.  The Blues then had to cancel their appearance at the event due to the changes after their fatal accident earlier in the 2016 season.  One of the changes that came out of the accident was that every 8th weekend the team would not perform, to inject some rest into its demanding schedule.  The eighth weekend fell on the dates for NAS Pax River.  The air station decided to move on with the show anyway, as there had not been one for five years.  With the loss of the Blues, the show started adding some acts to beef up the line-up, including several warbirds.  The F-18 demo appears to have been added the last week, as it only appeared as an act when the schedule came out early airshow week.

 For the show promoters at Pax River, the loss of the Blues resulted in a smaller crowd than originally hoped and planned for.  For me, it added warbirds, including one I had been trying to see during the summer, the DeHavilland Vampire.  I have seen the Blue Angels many times.  While they are fun to watch, the added warbirds worked out better for me.  The weather turned out perfect.  The sun was behind the flight line, which helped the photography  NAS Patuxent River Air Expo was a fine show and a great way to end the airshow season.

Below are some of the highlights of the show.


This is a warbird type I have not seen in quite a few years.  This Grumman HU-16 Albatross is based at a local airport not far from NAS Pax River.


This was the first time I have ever been on the flight deck of the Albatross.


When I took the photo of the ID, I did not notice it was a reproduction.  Zip codes were not introduced into the US until 1964.  Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation did not become Grumman Aerospace Corporation until 1969. 


NAS Pax River is the test location for the US Navy and Marine aircraft.  The F-35C is on the left and the F-35B on the right.  


The F-35C.  Both the Air Force and US Marines now have operational F-35s, and have been seen at airshows.  I was hoping that the US Navy would at least fly the F-35C here at its test base to show the public it actually flies.  No such luck!  Just a takeoff, fly-by, and landing would have been nice.


The F-35B.


 I found the ski ramp at the back of the airshow area.


The DH-100 Vampire just started performing this year at shows.  This was my first opportunity to see it.


The privately owned Sea Harrier of Art Nails.  Another good reason to visit the show.


The US Special Operations Command Black Dagger jump team did the honors for the flag jump.  They were actually one of two jump teams at the show; the other being the civilian Patriot Parachute team.  Both teams used a Navy MH-60 Blackhawk as the jump plane.
 

 The was the L-39 from the Warrior Flight Team was the first warbird to fly in the show. 


Charlie VandenBossche was up next with a full aerobatic routine in his Yak-52TW. 


Jerry Conley in the DeHavilland DH-100 gave the crowd several great photo opportunities. 


Joe Edwards is a pilot's pilot, as he is a former test pilot at NAS Pax River and a former astronaut.  At Pax River he flew the test development flights for the F-14B with the new F110 engine, and made the first flight of the F-14D Tomcat.  As a NASA orbiter pilot, he flew the last US mission to the Russian Mir Space Station, and also holds the record for the closest flights around the space station.  Needless to say, his T-28 aerobatic routine was precise!


Larry Kelly with his B-25 "Panchito" performs the only choreographed B-25 routine in the US, which includes multiple fly-bys, a simulated Tokyo Raid run, and does turn abounds at each end of the field rather than doing a race track pattern.  If an airshow is going to have a B-25, this is the one to have for maximum crowd satisfaction.


The Patriot Parachute team consists of former Navy Seals and Leapfrogs.


These two members of the team can be seen hooked together.


The Warrior Flight team returned with two aircraft for its second act.


With plenty of smoke, the Geico Skytypers looked very good against the blue skies of southern Maryland on a fall day.


The F-18 Tactical Demo was not originally scheduled at the NAS Pax River Air Expo, and appears to have been obtained due to the cancellation of the Blue Angels.  It was a welcome addition to the event.


The Black Daggers' second jump for the day was tactical.


This is not good!  The crew chief is standing on the Sea Harrier with a fire extinguisher.  I missed the photo a few moments before when smoke was coming from the top of the engine.  There is always that missed photo at each show.  Most times more than one!  The Sea Harrier flight was scrubbed for the day.


With the Sea Harrier down, it is time for the Raptor and the Heritage Flight.


After take-off, the P-51 gave us a nice low pass.


While the Raptor was flying, the crew chief was working on diagnosing the Sea Harrier problem.


This pass marked the end of the 2016 airshow season for me.  The NAS Pax River show was a great show to end with.  Great weather, a good lineup of warbirds, and modern military aircraft, with no dead time between acts.  I am glad I made the trip! 

Side trips on the way to the show
It is 630 miles from my house to the Naval Air Station at Pax River.  I made several stops along the way out to get the most value out of the trip.


Most persons in the US are unaware of the Washington Monument near Middletown, MD. 


Nearby in Frederick, MD, is the memorial and burial site of Francis Scott Key, who wrote the poem that later became the Star-Spangled Banner. 


 This WWII SCR-584 anti-aircraft radar is displayed at the National Electronics Museum at Linthicum Heights, MD.  This was a game changer during the Second World War, as it allowed for the first time anti-aircraft guns to accurately lead enemy aircraft.  Combined with four connected 90mm anti-aircraft guns firing the new proximity fuzed shells and an M9 optical tracker, the system first demonstrated its deadly capabilities at Anzio.  American troops were pinned against the ocean and subjected to daily and accurate air raids by Luftwaffe bombers.  Once the SCR-584 gun systems arrived and became operational, the Luftwaffe bombers were never a threat to the ground forces again.  In England, the SCR-584 was responsible for the downing of 90% of the V-1s attacking London.  They were easy targets for the SCR-584 because they flew straight and level. On June 6, 1944 at Normandy, twenty of these units were deployed to protect the invasion beaches from air attack.


The SCR-584 and all other radars were made possible by this device, the cavity magnetron.  It was invented by two British scientists.  The cavity magnetron was introduced to American officials during the Tizard Mission, which was part of a scientific and technology exchange program between the US and Britain in late 1940.  The cavity magnetron was 1,000 times more powerful in producing microwave for radar than either country had at the time.  Only 1% of a transmitted radar beam is returned from its target.  The huge increase in power finally allowed the existing receivers pick up the return signal at greater distances.  Also, due to its small size compared to other microwave sources at the time, it could be used in aircraft.  Its use was extremely important in WWII and thereafter.  Today, we all have a cavity magnetron in our microwave ovens.


Also on display at the museum is this mock-up of a SCR-399 radio system that was mounted on the bed of a 2-1/2 ton truck.  The simulated canvas covering of the bed of the truck had been cut away to show the radio equipment and operators' stations.


This is the new museum building for the Pax River Naval Air Museum, located just outside the main gate of the Air Station. It had its grand opening Memorial Day 2016.


The T-28 had only been in the museum a week when I visited.  The other aircraft is an early test version of the F-35B.


Outside is the loser in the competition to the F-35, the Boeing X-32B.


There is a large collection of former Navy and Marine test aircraft on the outside display. 


Knoxville, TN   MCAS Cherry Point, NC   Saint Louis, MO   CFB Trenton, ONT   Thunder Over Michigan, Bellevue, MI   Marion, IN   Waukegan, IL   NAS Patuxent River, MD

 


 
Home  Indiana Museums    Indiana Tanks on Outside Display   The Beginning    Revisions   First Flight of P-38F Glacier Girl  
USS Theodore Roosevelt    WWII Aircraft Manufacturing Sites    Gateguards
 2007 Airshows   2008 Airshows  22009 Airshows   2010 Airshows    2011 Airshows    2012 Airshows   2013 Airshows   2014 Airshows    2015 Airshows  2016 Airshows    2017 Airshows 
Aviation Museums of the Pacific Northwest
   Display Helicopter Locations   CAL FIRE   PV-2 Harpoon Photos     F6F Hellcat Photos
   Warbird Sightings   WWII US Air-Air Victories   Guest Photos    Indiana Warbirds   Featured Photos  Other Items   Links

Historic Sites   Historic Forts   Historic Texas Independence Sites   Pre-Historic Sites   Historic Manhattan Project Sites   GM Heritage Center


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