Engine start up of the SR71 and A12 aircraft was unconventional. The aircraft required a start cart, which connects to the underside of each nacelle via drive shaft. This particular start cart housed two Buick V-8 engines. Later, Chevy Big-Block engines were used in the carts. Though the SR71 and A12 used the proprietary JP7 fuel, the start cart was powered by common Aviation Gasoline (AVGAS).
When both V-8 engines in the start cart throttled up, it sounded like a drag race, then the sound of the jet engine would add to the noise, all reverberating off the walls of the hangar. The engines were started one at a time. Each mission alternated between starting the left or right engines first to balance any wear and tear.
Once the start cart was running at full speed, the pilot would inject Triethylborane (TEB) into the fuel mixture, a compound which explodes when it touches air. The SR71 and A12 had 16 measured shots of TEB per flight, per engine. One shot of TEB was consumed every time you started an engine, and every time you lit the afterburner. The pilot kept track of how many remaining shots of TEB via a small counter aft of each throttle.
This particular cart resides under A-12 #06938 at the USS Alabama Battleship Museum in Mobile, Alabama. I have covered this aircraft in a previous post. Click here to view.
*puts my ipod on shuffle and skips every song until i get one i was hoping for*
Top 3 phrases that’ll create sexual tension
- "Make me",
- "oh really",
- "is that so"
"What’s in it for me?"
Yes, I do enjoy walking at night. The world’s more to my liking then, not so loud, not so fast, not so crowded, and a good deal more mysterious.
Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.