By Jon Lake
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Extra info for Su-27 Sukhoi Superfighter
Author) LAUNCH 35 aboard for combat missions, other than the usual array of mission-specific clipboard and knee-pad flight-plan paraphernalia, is a pistol. 38calibre gun, holstered in the survival vest, while Russians prefer the Makarov 9 mm automatic. ) Hopefully, there is no need for these. But they are there just in case. Stepping Out Dressed for action, the crews step to their aircraft; the term 'stepping' is used because, encumbered by all the equipment, crews perform a kind of 'rodeo walk' to their machines.
One of the first tasks is to align the inertial navigation set (INS), a crucial piece of equipment fitted to every selfrespecting fighter. 12 used on most land-based F-4s, employ accelerometers and gyros which sense movement about the three axis (up/down, left/right and forwards). With the assistance of a navigation computer, they process these movements into meaningful information in the form of present position latitude/longitude coordinates which are constantly updated from the moment the aircraft's wheels began to turn.
Mike Dugre) LAUNCH out of its shelter or parking spot, waved out by the Crew Chief, the pilot employs his throttles to control speed and the rudder pedals to steer the machine, via its nosewheels. Thus, in this limited two-dimensional area of flying, 'driving' an aircraft requires a complete reversal of the psychomotor skills required to control speed and direction in a car. The stick, widely perceived to be the focus of play, actually only becomes useful during the take-off run. While taxiing, wagging le manche to and fro will merely cause the élevons to flip up and down like a whale's flipper.