16 October 2010

Holland's F-16

Not wanting to be outdone by their neighbours Belgium, Holland also sent along an F-16 from their RNLAF F-16 Demo Team which opened Sunday's programme.

With a plane painted in a metallic orange camouflage design, the Dutch display was also very good. Under the command of Captain Tobias Schutte from Leeuwarden Airbase, it takes a lot of people to keep this plane in the air. Apart from the pilot, the team consists of two coaches, six technical specialists, and two advisors.  As always, there are advisors!

"One Team, One Task" is the motto of the Royal Netherlands Air Force, and the Demo Team is not an exception to this.  Not only do they perform their demo duties but, if required, they can also be deployed to worldwide airforce operations during the demo season.

The F-16 was designed with a bubble canopy, giving the pilot superb surround visibility.  A Heads-up-display is projected onto the canopy, so that the pilot seldom has to look down at his controls.  This greatly reduces chances of motion sickness and dizziness.

Unlike many other aircraft, the joystick controller in the F-16 is not mounted in the center, but on the right-hand side.  This allows the seat to be more reclined which further reduces the motion-sickness and G-force effects.  I wonder if they have left-handed models for left-handed pilots?  Are there any left-handed F-16 pilots?

 You can view more posts on the airshow by clicking on the "Festa al Cel" label below.


Macthomson said...

I hope your brilliant airshow photos reach the wide viewership they fully merit.

I used to enjoy having a ringside seat when the aerial acrobatic teams visited Abu Dhabi and I could thrill to the spectacle taking place, through the window of my office on the Corniche. My photo souvenirs, though, fail to do justice to the subject.

nzm said...

Thank you, Malcolm.

I was a tad frustrated, as my 200mm lens was about 300mm too short at times, but thanks to big Canon 5D2 RAW files and Genuine Fractals, I was able to get reasonably good-sized files out of a lot of images.

We went to the Red Bull event here last year which was also held in conjunction with Festa al Cel 2009. I wrote about it too.

Red Bull Air Races have been cancelled for 2011 due to an overall review of the whole event. Sadly, Spain lost its representative pilot - Alejandro Maclean - who died in August while practicing for an airshow in Toledo province. He was also a TV Film Producer.