Author Topic: Last American team to hold the official ALSR Blue Flame Oct 23 1970 622.407mph  (Read 88203 times)

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Offline MAYOMAN

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Because of space limitations on reply #117 I didn't include this photo. It gives a better view of Ray Besasie's masterful aluminum craftsmanship. Again, primer is his work.
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Offline MAYOMAN

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The previous discussions in this story about the last American World Land Speed Record holder have focused on the actual “hands on” participants – both in our small Milwaukee Reaction Dynamics shop, and the crew that spent those stressful 20 hour days on the salt. Their recognition is well earned.

However, there was an equally involved “team” working on the design phase of the project which also deserves recognition. I’ll try to do that now.

When, in late 1968, the American Gas Association with prodding from the Institute of Gas Technology (IGT) committed to sponsoring The Blue Flame, we agreed to run for the record in 1969, which was in our sponsor contract. After the elation of seeing our dream finally becoming a reality, Pete, Ray, and I realized extra design manpower was necessary if we were to meet that ambitious schedule.

IGT was located on the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) campus and offered courses towards a degree in Gas Technology. We decided to enlist the available manpower of 2 IIT professors and several graduate students (whose work on The Blue Flame became their course theses) to help in the aerodynamic and structural design, calculating performance and stresses, and providing the engineering drawings we turned into the physical LSR vehicle. Even though their work was superb, the timing was affected by their necessary course work and academic schedule. The result was an awesome design, but a missed sponsor contract schedule. The record was achieved on October 22, 1970.

Aerodynamics:
Dr. T. Paul Torda
Thomas A. Morel – “Aerodynamic Design of a High-Speed Rocket Car”, June 1969
Structure and Performance:
Dr. Sarunas C. Uzgiris
Shashikumar V. Kurani – “Structural Design of an L.S.R. Vehicle”, December 1969
Kirit C. Desai – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle (Connnectors)”, December 1970
Harshad R. Parikh – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle Pat IV-Wheels”, January 1970
Prahlad T. Thakur – “Design of The Blue Flame Vehicle Part V-Suspension”, January 1970
Krishna G. Pandey – “Performance of The Blue Flame”, March 1970

While we had some challenges to overcome at Bonneville with our rocket design, The Blue Flame performed flawlessly with respect to the aerodynamics, vehicle handling dynamics, and structural integrity. The Blue Flame ran as if on rails from the very first. The veteran USAC timing crew and Goodyear engineers were in awe of the high speed stability. Job well done, IIT!

 :cheers:
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Offline MAYOMAN

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Pate and I interacted wit the IIT crew throughout the design and construction of The Blue Flame. This collaboration helped the students understand the physical constraints in the vehicle design.
The road is long - Life is short - Drive fast

Offline MAYOMAN

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ERROR CORRECTION!
I can't believe that I stated "the record was achieved on October 22, 1970"!
I had typed the text early in the morning - before coffee - then pasted to the post later.
Of course, we set the record on October 23!!!
Sorry about that. Just a senior moment.
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Offline kiwi belly tank

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Nice save Dick, Trickydicky over in England would have likely been correcting you on that one. :-D
  Sid.

Offline TrickyDicky

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Nice save Dick, Trickydicky over in England would have likely been correcting you on that one. :-D
  Sid.

Too fast for me...

Robin UK

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Blimey Dick, just a senior moment? I have senior days sometimes interrupted only by the need for more frequent personal pit stops.

Robin

Offline MAYOMAN

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Tom Morel worked on the aerodynamic design of The Blue Flame under the direction of Dr. T. Paul Torda at IIT. Tom had just arrived from Czechoslovkia, as an engineering graduate student, and was asked to accept this project for his master’s thesis by the MMAE Department Chair Dr. Andrew Fejer, also a Czech.
Dr. Uzgiris, directing the Indian graduate students, was an immigrant from Lithuania. So, all of the IIT engineering talent we were able to recruit for The Blue Flame project were recent immigrants to the United States. Following our land speed record, in 1970, they all went on to successful careers here, several starting their own engineering and consulting firms.
We were very fortunate to have this invaluable resource at our beckoning at that time. In discussing The Blue Flame project with many of them years afterward, they all related that in discussing their career resumes in interviews the most interest was in their work on this land speed record vehicle.
 :cheers:
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Offline MAYOMAN

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This thread has thoroughly covered the middle to the end of the journey, setting the world land speed record in 1970.
Several questions have come up requesting more information on the beginning of the journey.
I'll try to address that gap in a few more posts.
The road is long - Life is short - Drive fast

Offline ggl205

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Better yet, Dick, finish that book so we can read the whole story in detail co.plete with pictures. Lots and lots of pictures.

John

Offline WOODY@DDLLC

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I second that motion!  :-D :cheers: :cheers:
And third it and fourth it and ............... :roll: :roll:
All models are wrong, but some are useful! G.E. Box (1967) www.designdreams.biz

Offline N72727

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Where is that trailer today ?

Offline MAYOMAN

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I am quite certain that it remains with the car at the Sinsheim Museum. They occasionally have transported The Blue Flame to outside events, such as the Goodwood Revival in the UK. The trailer would be invaluable for those occasions.
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Offline ggl205

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Dick, what was the aero penalty, if any, by going to exposed trailing arms at rear compared to faired in supports originally seen on the brass wind tunnel scale model?

John 

Offline MAYOMAN

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John, The original concept of The Blue Flame had streamlined wheel "pants" and a thin wing-like structure locating the wheels outboard and swept rearward of the fuselage (area rule). This resulted in an unstable pitching moment. The immediate solution was to simply attach the rear exposed wheels by means of four tubular struts. While this configuration increased the subsonic aerodynamic drag considerably, as the speed increased into the transonic region the overall drag tended to be the same. Thus, the vehicle's ultimate performance capability was unchanged. Future tunnel work may have led to another solution, but the schedule required us to move forward with this one. The tunnel model options and drag plots are attached.
The road is long - Life is short - Drive fast