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By Dana Bell

A-10 Warthog: intimately & Scale

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Staying ahead of the target, we obtained some equally excellent tracking information, to confirm the submarine type. This was just too good to be true. “With due respect to those controlling us from the MHQ, whom we guys on the squadron felt lacked a dynamic approach to ASW, I wasn’t at all convinced that this unalerted detection would be prosecuted fully if we didn’t take the initiative, so I instructed the radio operator to send back a message along the following lines: ‘Intend to remain on task until PLE (prudent limit of endurance) and land at Kinloss instead of St Mawgan, the airfield we’d taken off from many hours before.

It was easily submerged so that the crew could breathe like a modern diving bell with air tubes and it was propelled by the crew walking along the bottom of the river. By 1727 fourteen types of submarines had been patented in England and in an issue of the Gentleman’s Magazine of 1740 there was a description of a boat which had the facility of a ballast using goatskins to admit and expel water. The first military submarine was the Turtle used in the American War of Independence,1776. It was designed by an American David Bushnell, with a single crew who had to propel the boat.

This project is discussed in detail in Chapter 9. The next milestone in the life of the Nimrod was the Falklands campaign and the introduction of flight refuelling capability, discussed in detail in that chapter. Of course once this modification had been approved and fitted to the MR2 fleet the range and endurance capability of the aircraft was increased enormously. Initially the tankers used were Victor K2s but the aircraft later took fuel from all the other RAF tankers, VC10s, C130s and Tristars.

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