Just hours before the Dayton International Air Show opened its doors to the viewing public on June 24, a two-seat Block 52 F-16D Fighting Falcon taking part in an Air Force Thunderbirds flight demonstration experienced a bizarre crash at the end of its preparation fight, flipping tip-over-tail onto the airfield grass.
Luckily, pilot Capt. Erik Gonsalves and passenger Sgt. Kenneth Cordova only sustained minor injuries in the incident, which occurred while taxiing at Dayton International Airport. But the damage to the aircraft was extensive: According to the War Zone, it took fire and rescue crews hours to remove the duo from the inverted cockpit, literally tearing the aircraft to shreds to extricate them.
A new video published on June 25 appears to show the extent of the damage to the F-16D — and it’s not pretty:
The brief video, uploaded to Facebook by Senior Master Sgt. James M. Williams from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, shows the wreckage of the aircraft aboard a flatbed truck. It is unclear if the footage was recorded at Dayton International Airport or Wright-Patterson AFB. Williams did not immediately respond to request for comment.
The ruined Fighting Falcon is a sad, miserable sight, but it’s a great contrast to this shot of Gonsalves smiling from his hospital bed, ready to fly another day:
Every once in a while, we run across a photo in The Times-Picayune archives that's so striking that it begs a simple question: "What in the name of Momus Alexander Morgus is going on in this New Orleans photograph?" When we do, we've decided, we're going to share it — and to attempt to answer that question.
Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces control the monitor of their drone at their advanced position, during the fighting with Islamic State's fighters in Nazlat Shahada, a district of Raqqa. (Reuters/Zohra Bensemra)
MUSCAT (Reuters) - The United States should keep arming and aiding the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) following the planned U.S. withdrawal from Syria, provided the group keeps up the pressure on Islamic State, a senior U.S. general told Reuters on Friday.
Long before Tony Stark took a load of shrapnel to the chest in a distant war zone, science fiction legend Robert Heinlein gave America the most visceral description of powered armor for the warfighter of the future. Forget the spines of extra-lethal weaponry, the heads-up display, and even the augmented strength of an Iron Man suit — the real genius, Heinlein wrote in Starship Troopers, "is that you don't have to control the suit; you just wear it, like your clothes, like skin."
"Any sort of ship you have to learn to pilot; it takes a long time, a new full set of reflexes, a different and artificial way of thinking," explains Johnny Rico. "Spaceships are for acrobats who are also mathematicians. But a suit, you just wear."
First introduced in 2013, U.S. Special Operations Command's Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) purported to offer this capability as America's first stab at militarized powered armor. And while SOCOM initially promised a veritable Iron Man-style tactical armor by 2018, a Navy spokesman told Task & Purpose the much-hyped exoskeleton will likely never get off the launch pad.
"The prototype itself is not currently suitable for operation in a close combat environment," SOCOM spokesman Navy Lt. Phillip Chitty told Task & Purpose, adding that JATF-TALOS has no plans for an external demonstration this year. "There is still no intent to field the TALOS Mk 5 combat suit prototype."