Reel Physics: The A-Team - Tank Flying

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I can't believe that, i'm shocked...

Just catching up. This series is awesome. Love the in depth explanation and the posting of the equations used. I'm not a math nerd, so most of the is a bit beyond me, but I still have to give a pat on the back where it's due. I'll be watching this every week.

Alright, this looks like it's gonna be a show I'll look forward to and watch on a regular basis. I can't wait to see future episodes.

Please, one day, rip up one of my favourite so-bad-it's-great movies: The Core. No research done in that one whatsoever. Still a great movie.

I noticed that you skipped over whether firing sideways would help change the trajectory of the tank. Would it have a noticeable impact on the tank's vector, or would the tank continue basically straight down? That was kind of a major part of the scene.

Just discovered this series. Please keep making this. Geeks with a love for geeky physics, geeky maths and geeky movies. I'm having a geekgasm.

sooo... just mythbusters but on the escapist and without bad acting?

Sounds like best thing ever?

This show is awesome, will be one ill be following.

Not that it changes the result, but you gents forgot an important part of the recoil equation. The round leaving the end of the barrel is certainly an important component of recoil, however the venting of the high pressure propellant gas also contributes significantly to the recoil of any weapon. The rounds used by the 120mm smoothbore are also have a semi-combustable case, which means that most of the case mass is coming out the muzzle of the weapon as well. I posit that the high pressure gas venting to atmosphere when the round leaves the muzzle will have a significant impact on the developed recoil force of the weapon. However, I doubt that this would have a significant effect on the outcome of this particular assessment.

There is a bit of "reel physics" that is used earlier in the film, during the helicopter chase scene. I am not referring to the looping of the UH-1 Huey (impossible due to the rotor setup on a UH-1), but to the evasion of the heat-seeking missile. I went back and I looked at that scene again, and I could not find any heat-seeking missiles on the enemy airframe (it had four Hydra-70 7-pack launchers). I'm going to assume that there are a couple of AIM-92 air to air stinger launchers strapped to the hardpoints that the Hydra launchers are attached to, just to make this assessment feasible. AIM-92 is based on the FIM-92 stinger, merely adapted to air launch from platforms like the enemy helo shown in the film.

Stinger is pretty advanced, with a gas-cooled indium antimonide (InSb) sensor in the seeker head. Cooled InSb sensors are used for all-aspect IR seekers, and were one of the earlier advancements in IR guided weapons. First generation IR guided weapons used uncooled lead sulfide (PbS) sensors in the seeker head, and could only track on shortwave infrared radiation. This corresponds to high temperatures (shorter wavelength = more energy), limiting the use of uncooled PbS seekers to tail-chase engagements only. The seekers actually track in on the IR emissions of the hot metal in the tailpipe, not the exhaust plume from the engine. Cooled InSb seekers are all aspect capable, and sense mid-wave infrared radiation as well as short-wave infrared radiation. This allows InSb seekers to sense the lower temperatures generated on the leading edges of the airframe, as well as the radiation from the hot tailpipe.

Simply put, there is not enough time for the rotors, let alone the engine tailpipe, to cool off between when the engine is shut down and when the missile passes it. They would have ate two stingers directly up the tailpipe of that huey, and that would have shredded the engine. They would have been able to set down, but definitely would not have made it back to the states, and definitely no "alpha mike foxtrot" moment.

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