Feb 182016

Now available… the first of two new US Aerospace Projects titles.

US Fighter Projects #1

US Fighter Projects #01 is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #01 includes:

  • Tremulis “Zero Fighter:” A World War II era two-stage rocket propelled, vertically launched interceptor
  • North American Rockwell D-541-4 “Surprise Fighter:” An early stealth fighter concept with flip-out wings
  • Republic TFX: An unconventionally-configured variable-sweep design, competed to become the F-111
  • Martin Model 302: A large four-engined supersonic interceptor loaded with missiles
  • Convair Nuclear Powered Interceptor Configuration II: A single-seat design with a nuclear reactor
  • NAF Float-Wing Interceptor: A WWII small flying boat to be carried by small ships
  • Martin Pursuit-Type Airplane: An early WWII-era design with a prone pilot
  • Boeing Model 1074-0006: A 1980’s design for a hydrogen-fueled hypersonic monster

usfp01ad2 usfp01ad1

USFP #01 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:



US VTOL Projects #1

US VTOL Projects #01 is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #01 includes:

  • Ryan Model 162: A three-lift-fan ground attack plane with a minimum wing
  • NACA VTOL Bomber: A slim six-engined supersonic concept
  • Bell X-14C: A three-engine low cost close support plane
  • Lockheed GL-224-2: A small rescue craft that can dock in flight with a C-130
  • Bell D270A-900-112: A tilt-rotor that has folding props
  • Boeing Model 837-313: A minor design for a fighter like a Harrier with variable-sweep wings
  • Hughes Hot Cycle Rotor/Wing Composite Research Aircraft: Use the exhaust from a jet engine to spin up a triangular rotor blade…
  • Lockheed CL-1026: A civilian derivative of the AH-56, to carry passengers from city center to city center

usvp01ad2 usvp01ad1

USVP #01 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:




 Posted by at 7:32 pm
Dec 252015

It dawns on me that today is a holiday of some note. It also dawns on me that I have bills to pay. So, until midnight-ish (mountain time), I’m running a sale on all US Aerospace Projects and Aerospace Projects Review downloadable issues. Still can’t run a convenient Paypal “coupon” or any such thing, so as with previous sales, you buy something and I’ll refund you the difference.

So, for the duration of the sale, get 20% off all APR and USXP orders of $10 or more. And get 25% off for all orders over $100.

Sale has ended.

 Posted by at 3:07 pm
Dec 202015

OK, so I wrote about the “Have Sting” orbital railgun, and produced some provisional diagrams of it, publishing them in US Space Projects #3. A blog article was written for War Is Boring discussing “Have Sting,” based in no small part on my diagrams. OK, so far so good. But then other blogs start writing about Have Sting, and an error is introduced.

Whenever a blog post links to my blog, a “pingback notification” is sent to my blog dashboard. I’ve just glanced at these, haven’t given them much thought. For the most part they seem to be just parroting the verbiage from the War is Boring piece. But with one change: “Have Sting” has become “Have Sling.” A “T” became an “L.”


In September, the Aerospace Project Reviews Blog published some fascinating diagrams depicting “Have Sling,” which aerospace historian Scott Lowther described as “[a] General Electric design for a gigantic orbital railgun.” Have Sling was never built, of course.


September, the Aerospace Project Reviews Blog published some fascinating diagrams depicting “Have Sling,” which aerospace historian Scott Lowther described as “[a] General …



And a bunch more, all seemingly the same post over and over.

And if you Google “have sling” and some other terms, some seriously wacky stuff appears, which I’m guessing is the result of some weird auto-translation:


In September, the Aerospace Task Reviews Blog site released some remarkable layouts portraying “Have Sling,” which aerospace chronicler Scott Lowther

“Aerospace Task Reviews?”



Exploring the ‘Fatality Celebrity’ space gun America never built

UNITED STATE protection coordinators did at one time think about constructing a huge Fatality Star-like gun in space as component of the “Celebrity Wars” rocket protection program, as Warisboring’s Steve Weintz advised us this week in the middle of the hullaballoo of the position of The Pressure Awakens.

In September, the Aerospace Job Reviews Blog site released some interesting representations portraying “Have Sling,” which aerospace chronicler Scott Lowther…

… the styles explain a space tool the dimension of the International Space Terminal, each Lowther.


So now when people try to research orbital railguns, there’s every chance that they will be presented with the fallacious designation “Have Sling.”

I just did a Google search on “railgun” and “Have Sling.” It spat back 741 results. “Railgun” and “Have Sting” only produced 321 results. The lie traveled around the world while the truth was still putting on its boots. And entertainingly, in doing some Googling for this post, I found this blog post. It is illustrated in part by “Do NOT try this at home:  schematics for the orbital railgun . (Image courtesy up-ship.com.)” I found this illustration amusing for two reasons… firstly, when you say “Image courtesy whoever,” generally you’ve asked whoever for permission to republish. I usually don’t mind people reposting the images I create, but I wasn’t asked here, just sayin.’ More entertainingly, the diagrams of the “orbital railgun” are in fact my diagrams for the 10-meter USAF Orion. Which ain’t a railgun.

 Posted by at 11:12 pm
Nov 272015

Just under the wire, rewards for November have been made available to APR patrons. Three documents and one large-format diagram, and one all-new CAD diagram, have been posted:

  1. NASA diagram (on two sheets) of a NERVA nuclear rocket engine display model, presenting the configuration with detail and clarity
  2. An article on a orbiting nuclear power station
  3. A full-color brochure (via photographs) on the Convair Model 36, their entry for what became the B-36
  4. A North American Aviation presentation on delta wings for the X-15, presenting a few different configurations
  5. An all-new layout CAD diagram of the Bernal Sphere space colony concept

If you’d like to help out and gain access to these and past and future rewards, please check out the APR Patreon.


2015-11 ad

 Posted by at 5:02 am
Oct 152015

A Convair illustration of the Model 54, a proposed operational version of the NX-2 nuclear powered aircraft. The Model 54 was a missile carrier, but with an internal bomb bay. It was also strictly subsonic, so its survivability over Soviet territory would undoubtedly have been seen as minimal in the supersonic-obsessed 1950’s. By carrying long-range cruise missiles (type unclear), the Model 54 could spend days orbiting outside Soviet controlled airspace and, when war breaks out, dash in at low altitude, unleash its missiles hundreds of miles from the target (and from the air defenses), and then run home. Of course, the Model 54 was never built.

A full-rez version of this has been made available to $4+ Patrons of the APR Patreon, in the 2015-10 Extras Dropbox folder. If you’re interested in obtaining this, and/or helping the cause of preserving aerospace history, please check out the APR Patreon.


 Posted by at 6:07 pm
Sep 162015

One of the more interesting, but less known, aspect of the Orion program was code named “Casaba Howitzer.” Little is known of this, except that pulse unit technology was somehow adapted to turn the device into a single-shot nuclear directed energy weapon. The propellant was somehow collimated into a tight “beam” that would be able to destroy enemy warheads out in space at some considerable distance. Just what that distance would be, though, remains clouded by Classification.

I created a simple provisional concept for Casaba Howitzer for issue V2N2 of Aerospace Projects Review. Since then… I’ve found out no new info on CH. But I’ve put considerable thought into the thing, and have redesigned my concept. Since the design is all mine, it’s usefulness in a factual history of Orion is minimal, but it’s great for fiction. And so I’m working on a set of diagrams for CH for Pax Orionis, and will include layouts of the “deployed” Casaba Howitzer configuration with the next release. Other diagrams will show the launch configuration as well as internal layouts.

If interested, check out the Pax Orionis Patron.


 Posted by at 9:51 am
Jul 252015

I have added three hi-rez scans to the APR Patreon “Extras” Dropbox folder for the month of 2015-07. If you are interested in these, they are available to all $4 and up patrons at the APR Patreon.

Bell artwork from the late 70’s or ’80’s depicting the D316 tiltrotor, a proposed operational derivative of their XV-15 research tiltrotor.

Bel D316 Tiltrotor art

Convair 58-9 SST, derived from the B-58 bomber (see HERE for a well illustrated article on this and other B-58 SSTs):

Convair 59-9 SST display model

Early artwork for a VTOL fighter concept from Ryan; this would eventually become the X-13:

early ryan X-13 art

 Posted by at 10:09 am
Jul 062015

I graduated in 1995 with a degree in aerospace engineering, and promptly put that degree to good use: my first job was moving mufflers from one side of a warehouse to another. After about a week there, I got a call from a former classmate who had got himself an internship at NASA-Johnson; they wanted those of us who’d worked on a  student design project for a moon probe to come and give a presentation. So I told my boss “I’m taking next week off.” When I got back they promptly fired me for ditching work… I wasn’t exactly tore up about that. When you’ve just been given a tour of the innards of a NASA facility, shuffling mufflers seems *really* depressing.

So, I buckled down and put my degree to use getting another job: moving items off one truck and onto another truck at a UPS depot. I was the one non-union, non-management guy there. It was my task to see to it that high-value packages ($5K and up) got off Truck A and onto Truck B, but due to union regs I wasn’t allowed to touch it; I had to beg a union worker to actually carry the package, which of course they did in their own time. A spectacular setup. Truly a model of efficiency.

Anyway, one day (*roughly* this time of summer, so right at 20 years ago) a result of a Freedom of Information Act Request showed up in the mail from NASA: the Summary volume of the General Atomic Project Orion report for NASA. It was a revelation! I took it to work with me one day and read through it on my lunch break (it’s not like I had to waste time socializing during lunch, since nobody would socialize with the one non-management, non-union guy), and a thought occurred to me:

“You know, I aught to take that $1.00  3D CAD program I just bought on floppy disk for my DOS computer and draw up the 10-meter Orion, and write an article describing the concept. I bet people might buy something like that.”

That was the first time it had occurred to me to take a stab at writing aerospace history in that format. I’ve been poking away at writing about Orion ever since.

So the NPP book has been in development for twenty years now. So based on that… how long do you think it’ll take to finish Pax Orionis? Hmmm…

 Posted by at 10:47 pm