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Dark Horse: General Larry O. Spencer and His Journey from the Horseshoe to the Pentagon

3 December 2021
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Dark Horse: General Larry O. Spencer and His Journey from the Horseshoe to the Pentagon, General Larry O. Spencer USAF (retired), 2021, ISBN 9781682477021, 162 pp.

Larry Spencer is a remarkable person on several counts. To those of us on the lower rungs of society he made it from the hood to flag officer in the U.S. Air Force (USAF). To those in the USAF he made it to four star generalship not by being a fighter pilot (the regular route), or even by being a pilot (my Lord!)—but by being a financial analyst (What?). To most of us he is what we all work to be—honest, hard working, intelligent and knowing full well he got where he did with the help of others. A humble, intelligent, dutiful person not likely to be heard of by most of the population—unlike too many of those over-the-top reality show characters with their broken personalities which are entertaining if you are not having to live or work with them. It is a real person like General Larry Spencer (USAF, ret.), who should be lauded and emulated and this autobiography is an excellent, as well as enjoyable, way to make a better life through clear thinking, family and wise people who freely give their time.

Spencer is also a great story teller with many tales to tell. Naturally enough his story begins at the beginning—born and initially raised in an all Afro-American neighborhood of Washington DC—with summers spent on a relative’s tobacco farm in Virginia. His experiences with his Virginia relatives are enlightening and extraordinary to those who are not in a minority. These relatives grew up in the Jim Crow Era South and the local population-of-means appeared to wish to remain there. Can you imagine not raising your voice in town to say hello for fear of being beaten? Most of us cannot which makes but Spencer’s description that much more visceral.

Spencer intriguingly describes childhood clues to his talent to analyze math and facts to be efficient with funds. These clues illustrate why a wide exposure of experiences to children is imperative with immediate reinforcement of success, whatever it may be. 

Fighter pilots make films.

Bomber pilots make history.

Nothing moves without logistics.

Logistics are frozen unless the money is moving. 

This is where the author excelled in serving his country—his fantastic ability at keeping things moving through thrift, efficiency, observation, thinking and conferring. How he managed that through education and promotions leading to his appointment to the Pentagon as a four star is a tale worth listening to in order to gain deeper understanding of how historic event are really made possible. 

Spencer also accomplished all his successes with compassion. His understanding of human nature seems innate and shows how relating instead of simply demanding can be a tremendously more successful strategy. Thinking and intelligence with heart—a superior combination to enjoy in the reading of Larry Spencer’s life and USAF career.

British Naval Intelligence—an epic and transfixing story

9 November 2021

British Naval Intelligence Through the Twentieth Century, Andrew Boyd, 2020, ISBN 978-1-5267-3659 8, 776 pp.

Andrew Boyd authored a fantastic read which is chock full of knowledge, insight and understanding. The title suggests its thrust has a British-centric perspective but it is not to be taken as singular or close-minded. Boyd not only brings in the human dimension to this fascinating history—he also mixes in understanding of politics and economics as vital and inseparable parts of an unfolding history. Readers will better understand the motivations of Russia, France, Italy, the United States and Japan as well as Great Britain—through their national personalities as well as each’s economic and political developments. British Naval Intelligence is refreshing in seeking and obtaining an all-around understanding and not simply tunneling through data, dates and descriptions.Intriguingly, Boyd initially teases us with the 007 question hidden in plain sight, “Why did James Bond hold a rankin the Royal Navy while working in the civilian MI-6?” Well…author Ian Fleming has a lot to do with that as is recalled beginning in the 1940s portion of the book. Fleming thought up innovative and ruthless plans in his career with British Naval Intelligence, and this book tell the tale.

Back in the day Britain conceptualized and brought forth a naval intelligence service due to her expansive empire across the globe beginning two centuries ago. As technology changed, making communications as well as warships faster, British Naval Intelligence developed in earnest. Consisting of more than a few agencies and staffed by sometimes curious but always highly intelligent people, Boyd follows the trail of an evolving national asset with clarity and detail.

Surprises abound throughout. Britain’s 19th Century strategy to control access to foreign coaling stations as a means to effectively blockade foreign navies. World War I undersea communication cable cutting (and quick replacement) sometimes by use of submarines. The amount of code breaking done by so many countries—including England’s breaking United States diplomatic codes in the early 20th Century. Seemingly the best location to find spies being consulates and embassies. 

Indeed, Boyd also understands the World War II German Navy’s U-boat effort in detail with production numbers and losses—not to mention the economic and industrial strategies employed by the Axis as well as the Allies. Boyd convincingly has the numbers which illustrate that U-boat losses were always high and the Battle for the Atlantic was a closely run thing. Just one more myth-ending historical clarification Boyd provides. He also notes that no U-boat which entered the Mediterranean Sea ever made it back out—illustrating the author’s attention to the impact of intelligence, or its lack.

Boyd takes his readers through the 1980s and revolution in the redesign of submarines to also include intelligence gathering platform as part of the mission profile. Many of the mission descriptions are incredible in their daring as well as advanced technology.

Andrew Boyd could hardly be more accomplished or qualified to address such a comprehensive and complex subject area and we are fortunate he accepted this work. British Naval Intelligence belongs on the shelves of so many interests, for example: submarines, World Wars I and II, 19th and 20th Century history, political and economic sciences, and human interest (this book is packed with it). 

The Secret Horsepower Race—more than an exciting story

9 November 2021

Author of The Secret Horsepower Race, Calum Douglas, is expert with internal combustion engines having a masters degree in mechanical engineering and having studied under former chief motor racing designer for Cosworth, Geoff Goddard. He further enhanced his expertise while working for Toyota studying Formula 1 engine technology. He also learned the German language—and more on that a bit later. The in-your-face World War II daylight bombing raid by a trio of RAF Mosquitos meant to embarrass Herman Göring while giving a significant speech opens the book and sets the stage.

All the previously mentioned comes together to produce this exciting story of five countries striving to develop the most powerful fighter engines possible in the ramp-up to World War II and its duration. In Europe, once World War II began, France dropped out after being invaded and Italy, after a good start, faded—leaving Germany, Great Britain (now the UK) and the USA in an increasingly urgent strategic race for supremacy of the air. 

Douglas presents the story, as the best writers do, by showing and not telling which easily avoids what could have been a lengthy technical report. Instead, The Secret Horsepower Race—though full of understandings, knowledge, explanations and illustrations—presents this undersold but fabulous tale in an exciting yet accurate way. Chapter Two is a needed read though a bit dense since this is where the reader comes to understand and appreciate the inner workings of powerful aero engine design, testing and production. Interestingly, each country both excelled and was left wanting in various areas of expertise compared to one another. Beginning with Chapter Three the book figuratively takes off and becomes increasingly difficult to put down as the reader follows various engines with their successes or failures. Along the way Douglas also notes events of World War II influenced by these engine as well as changes demanded to these engines. Many of these observations are revelatory such as his view of the importance of the successful Operation Torch denying Axis Germany its chief source of cobalt.

Lack of rare earth metal ores became increasingly problematic for Germany. As the war progressed less and less of these precious ores were obtained though they were desperately needed to best corrosion-proof valves, especially the exhaust valves as the reader learns. Douglas profoundly underscores the importance of these metals as well as why it was strategic of Germany to invade Norway early on in order to obtain nickel. During the war the Allies enjoyed an abundance of rare earth metals which went beyond nickel and cobalt to indium as well—even silver and gold in the bearing fabrication. While the Allies improved bearing life with these exotic metal alloys the Germans were left to devise ways to simply keep their engines running without them. Chromium was substituted for example and it was a small technical miracle accomplished by German engineering along with “economy steel” substitution for higher grade alloys. Germany knew of Allied bearing technology intimately after analysis of crashed aircraft but could not replicate it.

The physics behind sodium-filled partially-hollow stemmed valves is fascinating to learn of as is the imperative nature of rapid heat transfer away from the combustion chamber for thousands of instances each minute of operation. There is nothing overlooked as even the minute gaps where the threads of a spark plug do not contact the cylinder head which impedes heat transfer are addressed. The reader comes to appreciate the absolute harmony of a smoothly running yet powerful internal combustion engine. 

The Secret Horsepower Race mentions and describes several engines and makers but emphasizes the Rolls-Royce Merlin and Packard-built Merlin V-1650 (e.g., Spitfire and Mustang), the Allison V-1710 (e.g., P-38), the Daimler-Benz DB 601 (Bf 109, later renamed Me 109) as well as the Jumo 213 (Fw 190 and Ta 152). Other engines are also described in some detail like those produced by Pratt & Whitney, BMW, Napier and Bristol. The three spotlighted engines, and their countries of origin, are visually represented on the book’s cover with the imaginative artwork of the renowned Piotr Forkasiewicz in his illustration of an RAF Spitfire, Luftwaffe Fw 190 and US Army Air Forces Mustang flying low and flying fast!

Readers also learn to appreciate that engine development is a years-long and iterative process. Back in the day, designers were simultaneously advancing engine development as well as devising new engine testing techniques as demands for more power and at higher altitudes quickly became paramount. Before the war’s outbreak most planners did not envision 400 mph+ speeds at altitudes well above 20,000 feet. The story of Italy’s engine testing chamber is amazing. Though it is the engine testing facility at Farnborough which draws the most awe with its dedicated engine to depressurize the testing chamber with an additional four engines driving air to the test engine at speeds of hundreds of miles per hour, not to forget the test engine. So…as many as six high powered engines running in unison—the inhabitants of Farnborough must have been more than aware of testing days.

Back to the author’s understanding of German—Douglas translated, and included, many German messages and conversation transcripts. Because of this, the context of the time as well as the deciding factors by the likes of Albert Speer (Nazi Minister of Armaments), Kurt Tank (Chief Designer at Focke Wulf), Erhard Milch (Luftwaffe chief) and Adolf Galland (famed and admired Luftwaffe leader) are represented as precisely as possible. For instance, Douglas cites Adolf Galland where he angrily stated his opinion that he was absolutely sure that the Luftwaffes most able pilot, Hans Joachim-Marseille, died because of engine failure due to faulty bearings (their overheating caused an engine fire). I’m not aware of this being cited in the two biographies of Joachim-Marseille I’ve read—it is the German translation which makes this type of difference. Galland was also underscoring the abysmal fighter engine life of less than 50 hours between major overhauls due to ill-manufactured engine bearings. Fifty hours hen Allied engines would go for 300 hours! Additionally, Luftwaffe engines we continuously derated as the war advanced to its conclusion. In another revelatory observation, Luftwaffe mechanics replaced exhaust valves ten times more frequently than Allied aviation mechanics.

Douglas’s insights continue throughout The Secret Horsepower Race. Insights into flying the P-38 Lightning, advantages of fuel injection (as well as its main drawback), how an Allied scientist figured out an Achille’s Heel regarding German aviation fuel that was not used for another year (at a cost of many lives), Speer’s 8000 aircraft number fudge…and much more.

Supercharging and turbocharging become a significant part of this story with their developments approached at different angles and with varied timing by each maker. Which brings into view the strategic nature of this usually underwhelmingly addressed part of aviation history—the close association between national testing facilities and privately owned engine designing/production firms. Amazingly, each country easily devoted hundreds of people in their efforts.  Engine design and development ranged from octane enhancement, to impeller vane design, valve overlap, various methods of boosting and more.

More surprises await! Great Britain’s slow to adopt fuel injection though many crashed Luftwaffe engineswereanalyzed and tested. The Allies knew of “Ha Ha” gas by name but the story of its taking over a year to solve as well as why Great Britain could only use it with the de Havilland Mosquito illustrates the author’s range.

It is boost control where Germans excelled and the Allies were late to catch up. German engineers developed the Kommandogerät mechanical computer, freeing Luftwaffe pilots to better concentrate during aerial combat since rapid changes in altitude required equally quick adjustment of boost pressure. Failure could result in engine destruction. A P-38 pilot, for example, would have to constantly adjust throttle, mixture and boost while keeping in mind his altitude while twisting, zooming and diving in a fight—that is until the P-38J model as Douglas ably details.

The use of tetraethyllead (TEL in the book) for octane control and valve overlap (measured as degrees of crankshaft rotation) is nicely told as is the Allied mystery of why the Luftwaffe fighter engines used a higher octane than they could fully utilize. Another fantastic insight is the need for crankcase scavenger oil pumps to have much greater capacity than the oil pumps proper—and how some countries came to that specification before others to their immense advantage. Why the inverted V became standard is demystified as is why air cooled engines are run differently compared to liquid cooled designs.

A plethora of sidebars describing pertinent personalities gives the human dimension to this historical and fantastic story. Learn of high powered aircraft engines (many elements of which remain in today’s commercial engines). Learn of decision points in the history of World War II and the fate of aircraft designs. Learn of the people behind it all—the designers, testers and users. This book is equally at home on the aviation bookshelf as it is on the coffee table as it is in the World War II history section. 

Underwater Aircraft Recovery Podcast Hosting Taras Lyssenko

6 November 2021

The Green Dot (3rd Thursday of the month podcast hosted by the EAA Museum) recently hosted Taras Lyssenko who has recovered more than a few dozen aircraft from beneath the waves through his firm A and T Recovery. The firm (amazingly, it has a cadre of just three people) has recovered more aircraft for restoration than any other firm of note. Thankfully, most being former World War II relics which had been wasting away but are now displayed pristinely–except two which are exhibited as conserved wrecks in full scale dioramas with lighting and sounds effects!

In this podcast he talks about several subjects ranging from the human nature involved to the salvage operations proper. Along the way, hear of the recovery of the most historic aircraft displayed in the National Naval Aviation Museum as well as the rare example of the Vought Vindicator displayed nearby. Many other stories of aircraft recovery ops abound as A and T Recovery has rescued tens of aircraft from oblivion (and on largely a not-for-profit basis) to be restored then displayed in museums as well as airports worldwide.

This really is an exceptional story.

Torpedo Bombers 1900–1950: an illustrated history

11 October 2021

Torpedo Bombers 1900–1950: an illustrated history, Jean-Denis Lepage, 2020, ISBN 978 1 52676 347 1, 394 pp.

Torpedo Bombers 1900-1950: an illustrated history by Jean-Denis Lepage

Defeating opposing ships by-way-of underwater explosions near, or against, a warship’s hull has always been heavily sought after. Water is powerful. The force of water rushing back into the volume created by the gas of the explosion can cripple or fracture a hull. Ensuing reverberations sent through and along the hull can rupture pipes, circuits and even frames, rudders and screws. The foregoing damage can quickly immobilize, even sink, a ship in mere minutes—but such a hit can surely taking it out of the fight as the crew swarms to control the resultant fires and flooding instead of fighting the ship (as the USN says when the ship is in an engagement).

The preferred weapon of choice in this regard is the torpedo and it was the torpedo bomber which ruled naval aviation warfare for a time—especially in concert with the dive bomber. Little has been written to explain the subject. Even less about the contribution of countries which applied some of their best designers to produce aircraft capable of delivering a one punch knock out. That is until Jean-Denis G.G. Lepage applied his knowledge and artistic talent in Torpedo Bombers 1900-1950: an illustrated history.  

Lepage is as handy with his pen in writing as well as drawing. All manner of countries and their aircraft are captured in this well organized and friendly book to read. It would be hard pressed for the reader to find a torpedo bomber aircraft not mentioned or illustrated—even a few pressed into torpedo bomber service as needs dictated. Torpedo Bombers is the book for the subject, bar none.

The author avoids reciting aircraft types with their vital statistics. He easily guides the reader to clear understandings of both the torpedo and the torpedo bomber, their evolving tactics and the incredible bravery of their flight crews as they flew straight, predictable courses at steady, slow, airspeeds for minutes on their runs-ins. Lepage’s writing especially impresses as readers are transported to a torpedo bomber on its attack run.

Nowhere to hide. No way to dodge. Plenty of time to get shot at by primary and secondary armaments as well as the dedicated antiaircraft cannon and machine guns. Amazing that crews could be found to man these machines.

Nearly every page has a drawing or sketch or two—or more—of his drawings. Lepage brings life to these aircraft as most drawings are done in shaded relief and of varying perspectives. Innovative designs. Puzzling designs. Failed designs. All seem to be contained concisely and accurately in this soon to be salient book on the age of the torpedo bomber. 

His brief essays on torpedo bomber-borne weapons are interesting to read as well as accurate. Additional essays on tactics and specific aircraft carriers bring historical spice and the context of the times.

After the end of World War Two aircraft engines became so powerful that aircraft did not have to segregate into dive bomber or torpedo bomber as either mission could be performed by the aircraft of the day. By the, torpedo attacks against combatant ships had fallen out of the mainstream and replaced by missile launches. Though torpedoes still were paramount for certain land targets (e.g., dams) as well as against submarines—so attack aircraft, helicopters as well as flying boats and amphibians all became torpedo bombers. Lepage smoothly addresses this mission evolution as well as the more remarkable aircraft types of the waning torpedo bomber days. His closing drawings are also wonderfully accomplished artwork:

  • The UK’s Saunders-Roe SR.A/1 (daring aircraft design of a turbojet powered flying boat fighter/bomber)
  • Japan’s Shin Meiwa PS-1 (essentially a Grumman HU-16 Albatross design on steroids with STOL performance)
  • The USA’s Martin P6M Seamaster
  • The USSR’s Beriev Be-12
  • The Republic of China’s AVIC TA-600

Lepage’s bibliography as well as comprehensive index enhance and orient this encompassing reference on the aircraft type which was paramount during the 1930’s through the mid 1940s. The brief but meteoric phase of naval aviation that was held by the torpedo bomber and its crews. 

20th Century Passenger Flying Boats

10 October 2021

20th Century Passenger Flying Boats, Leslie Dawson, 2021, ISBN 978 1 52674 420 3, 91 pp.

Leslie Dawson’s superb authorship and more than capable detective work of history has, again, paid off. His previous book—Fabulous Flying Boats: a history of the World’s passenger flying boats—has been extremely well received since it is jam packed with unique photos as well as researched stories giving the flavor as well as the adventure that was the world of flying boats in their heyday.

Fabulous Flying Boats: a history of the World’s passenger flying boats is a fantastic read and required by any who follow aviation history—but it just could not hold all the amazing images brought to light by Dawson. So…20th Century Passenger Flying Boats was written, and happily so. The author has liberated treasures of poignant moments captured on film from many private collections and albums. Another of the author’s talents is relating the reader to the human dimension of this history. Yes, the human dimension—not the dry recitation of numbers and dates, or the description of events with none of their context or feel. It is viscerally telling how, back in the day, men and the women muscled or finessed, whichever was required at the time, these fantastic flying machines through the air and along the water. The stories and photographs are excitingly placed in the backdrop of one of aviation’s most adventurous periods, through the wartime of World War II, as well as after.

My favorite chapter is the fourth one, C-class to Africa. It was such a pleasure to read coming entirely unexpectedly and so brilliantly written in Dawson’s silky hand. Here, the author took me vicariously on a luxurious series of flights aboard a Short Brothers Empire Class Flying Boat. The travel began with the arrival with at London’s Empire Terminal Building for the weighing-in and then hopping onto one of the specially designated last two cars of the train, destination Southampton. My imagined journey into yesteryear was an experience of several plush days of flying, dining and overnighting. Flying first from the historic English waters of Southampton to a final landing in culturally resplendent Durban South Africa—with refueling and rest stops along the way at intriguing, exotic locales. Getting on and off the aircraft—in to and out of hotels of varying types—the food service—the maintenance at stopovers—and, of course flying at vista viewing altitudes in the Empire class flying boat are described so well that I could sense the anticipation and enjoyment of flying as so few were able to afford to do back in the day.

Naturally, post-World War I flying boats begin the book as this is the time when flying boats developed into revenue passenger business vehicles. And Dawson does not solely concentrate on the United Kingdom’s contribution but also those of Italy, the United States, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand and Norway.

Indeed, the author does not focus on Great Britains passenger flying boats, as could easily be done, but concisely addresses those of other countries in chapter-by-chapter order. The Pan American Airways flying clippers are noted in charming detail, as expected. Though, it is the flying boats produced elsewhere where this book luminesces. For example, the description of France’s magnificent Latécoère 631 and the cockpit illustration of it has to be seen to be believed. It should not be missed. 

Dawson’s recollection of the tremendous international competition to fly across the Atlantic Ocean is excellent and includes both the North Atlantic as well as the South Atlantic. Notably, he did not forget João Riberrio de Barros who piloted the first private non-stop flight spanning the South Atlantic in the Jahú, the wildly beautiful twin hulled Italian Savoia-Marchetti S.55 flying boat (photo included of course).

Pioneering efforts using Short Brothers aircraft in aerial refueling as well as the Short Mayo Composite to transit the North Atlantic were nearly like science-fiction in their day and Dawson gives readers the thrill which existed in the era. Wartime during World War II is ably described as is the post war period. Finally, Dawson leaves readers with an enticing end chapter where the remaining great passenger flying boats can be seen today—whether in museums or in flight. An added bonus is an appendix listing passenger flying boat fleets of the past.

This book will be enjoyed by the casual reader as well as enthusiast for its embracing writing as well as its images, the vast majority of which cannot be seen elsewhere. It is an absolute treasure as are his previous books on flying boats, Wings Over Dorset: Aviation’s History in the South and Fabulous Flying Boats: a history of the World’s passenger flying boats.

20th Century Passenger Flying Boats can be obtained at the Naval Institute Press quite reasonably (even more so when a member which is economical as well as rewarding). Or, you can give your money to Amazon. But it’s, perhaps, best to support book publishers so authors like Leslie Dawson can continue their work producing great books, niche books, intelligent books.

Explorer Aircraft Hybrid Powerplant Plans

27 September 2021

A highly interesting press release arrived first thing in the morning. It shows another facet of the Explorer Aircraft development–showing the company continues moving its innovative yet robust designs into the coming future of professional aviation.

Prologue

Pursuant to a recent study by NASA, which indicated strong growth in the near future of electric powered (i.e, hybrid) aircraft, Explorer Aircraft has continued to improve the design or their aircraft–the 500T and the 750T. Recently, the cockpit has been redesigned after testing input. Additionally, the wing has been dissected and examined after a thorough series of flight testing.

Points from the press release

First…Explorer Aircraft and magniX have signed a memorandum of understanding for the provision of the electric propulsion for a new electric hybrid light-utility aircraft.

Second…Explorer Aircraft is developing the next generation high efficiency utility aircraft, designed by award winning engineers Graham Swannell and John Roncz. The aircraft will play an important role in replacing the tens of thousands of more than half century old utility aircraft still in service all over the world.

Third…“Explorer Aircraft is thrilled to have magniX, the leading electric aircraft propulsion manufacturer, on board the Explorer Program.” said CEO Bryan Lynch. “No one else has done as much to push the profile and reality of electric aircraft in our industry.”

Bryan continued, “It is critical that we work together to develop a viable replacement for the thousands of obsolete, inefficient aircraft in service all over the world. This is only possible working together with the best, leading-edge suppliers. magniX is a perfect fit for us.”

“We are thrilled to be powering the next generation of utility aircraft,” said Roei Ganzarski, CEO of magniX. “The new Explorer aircraft offers operators a real path to cleaner flying–be it for passengers or cargo.”

Bryan Lynch continued, “Explorer Aircraft are developing the only aircraft designed for powerplant options, (battery, electric hybrid, fuel cell) and future autonomous flight systems. Through a combination of high efficiency aerodynamics, composite materials technology and inclusion of leading technology suppliers and developers in the design process we are future-proofing our aircraft.”

“Through a holistic approach of high efficiency and integration of latest and future technology we give ourselves the ability to indefinitely reuse high value aircraft products. We can reduce our impact on the environment and help in the fight against climate change.”

magniX has a strong and inclusive identity, covering not just their commercial goals but also the spirit of the people and community they form together. The aviation industry must reinvent itself by offering greater flexibility and little or no emissions. magniX is leading that change.

Explorer Aircraft is dedicated to creating the next generation, low impact, utility aircraft

Additional contacts:

Explorer Aircraft contact:

Bryan Lynch
Chief Executive Officer Explorer Aircraft, Inc.

+1-713-412-3418 

B.Lynch@ExplorerAircraft.com

magniX contact:
Simon Roads
Head of Sales, magniX

(541) 203 0552 

Simon.Roads@magnix.aero

Aircraft brokers and those seeking fleet applications contact:

Taras Lyssenko
Chief Business Development/Government Relations
(305) 794-4457

Taras@ExplorerAircraft.com

Explorer Aircraft nearing production!

17 September 2021

September 15, 2021

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Explorer Aircraft has Engaged Castle Placement as Exclusive Placement Agent to Finance the Next Generation of Utility Aircraft

Explorer Aircraft is developing the next generation utility aircraft, designed by award winning engineers Graham Swannell and John Roncz. The aircraft will play an important role in replacing the tens of thousands of more than half century old utility aircraft still in service all over the world. Explorer’s 500T prototype, featured on the cover of NASA’s regional air mobility study (https://sacd.larc.nasa.gov//sacd/wp- content/uploads/sites/102/2021/04/2021- 04-20 RAM.pdf), underlines how Explorer’s versatile aircraft will serve multiple markets.

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Explorer 500T Prototype Aircraft

Bryan Lynch Chief Executive Officer Explorer Aircraft, Inc.

+1-713-412-3418

B.Lynch@ExplorerAircraft.com

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“Explorer Aircraft is excited to announce our partnership with Castle Placement. Castle brings avast amount of financing experience to the company.” said Bryan Lynch, CEO. “We are building a world class team of engineers, partners and suppliers, and Castle aligns with our drivefor outstanding results and high integrity.”

“Castle Placement is delighted to work with Explorer Aircraft, which exemplifies the forward looking, ecological and innovative projects and programs we love to support.” Steve LeFavour, Managing Director said. “It is great when a company like Explorer comes along to disrupt a large, high value, global market served with obsolete inefficient products.”

“Explorer Aircraft has studied the global market and demand for light-utility aircraft, and our world-renowned design and engineering team have designed a technologically advanced aviation platform to meet and exceed requirements for the next 50 years.” stated Bryan Lynch. “When the existing utility aircraft fleet was designed it was not anticipated they would be in service for 50, 60 or even 70 years. Our aircraft is designed to upgrade power and flight systems, and our composite airframe is as fatigue and corrosion free as today’s technology allows. We have developed what we believe is a future-proof aircraft that will efficiently and effectively serve markets for the next 50 years or more.”

Explorer Aircraft’s 750T is a new, low drag, high performance, all-composite, light-utility aircraft. With a 4000lb useful load and 200kts cruise it is designed for cargo, passenger, medevac, and military/special missions.

As the newest high-performance aircraft designed for the light utility market, Explorer is making sure that its customers can minimize their impact on the environment with an efficient hybrid electric power system that can be used in small rural airports all over the world, with no need for expensive infrastructure improvements.

Explorer 750T Hybrid Production Aircraft Concept Design

About Castle Placement: Castle Placement is the premier private capital investment bank, with over 600,000 accredited investors and 64,500 institutional, private equity, venture capital and strategic investors, family offices, pension funds, foundations, endowments, sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds and lenders. Experienced investment bankers with significant personal relationships. Robust, data-driven technology platform. Member FINRA/SIPC. CPGOapp.com provides unparalleled and transparent access for issuers and investors.

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Additional contacts: Investor contact:

Steve LeFavour
Managing Director, Castle Placement (469) 301-4894 slefavour@castleplacement.com

Aircraft brokers and those seeking fleet applications contact:

Taras Lyssenko
Chief Business Development/Government Relations (305) 794-4457
Taras@ExplorerAircraft.com

A Republic RC-3 Seabee

16 June 2021
Republic RC-3 Seabee in one hangar of the Valiant Air Command Museum in Titusville FL—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography
Republic RC-3 Seabee—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography
The Republic RC-3 Seabee’s doors (or hatches, if preferred) with the one on the bow used when on the water and the other when on the land—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography
Starboard wing float of this Republic RC-3 Seabee—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography

A Thud’s RAT and a bit more

1 June 2021
Republic F-105D Thunderchief at the Valiant Air Command Museum in Titusville FL—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography
Republic F-105D Thunderchief with its extended RAT (Ram Air Turbine) which is an airflow driven emergency electrical generator for vital flight operations if the engine quit—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography
Republic F-105D Thunderchief showing its refueling probe—©2021 Joseph May/Slipstream Photography