Although this is one of the early attempts to withstand g-forces, I still think it would be useful for a cheap fighter plane project but as it restricts the pilots view to some extents, it would be better suited for an Interceptor/Recon aircraft. Below is the cockpit of a Northrop XP-79.
Last Edit: Sept 18, 2008 7:31:49 GMT 12 by cutaway
The Pom's weren't too keen on people ejecting from government property in the 1950's. The Vulcan had hot seats for the pilot and 2IC, but the 2 blokes down the back were expected to make their own arrangements. The HP Victor was the same. As a compromise the Victor was provided with a thing like a shower screen which, in an emergency, would swing out to shield the GIB's trying to bale out thru the side door. Only problem then would be avoiding the engine intakes. Yank's weren't much better. Didn't the F104 eject downwards?
RAF doctor who improved the ejection seat and became an international expert on aircraft escape systems.
Last Updated: 1:18AM BST 18 Sep 2008
CAPTION - Barwood: an outspoken man, he was never afraid to take on the bureaucrats
Group Captain Tony Barwood, who has died aged 93, was a consultant in aviation medicine and specialised in the development of survival equipment and aircraft escape systems for military aircrew.
For 18 years Barwood was head of the applied physiology section of the RAF Institute of Aviation Medicine at Farnborough, building an outstanding reputation for his expertise in the field of the safety and survival of aircrew.
His work led to modifications to the Martin Baker ejection seat, which markedly reduced the incidence of back injuries on ejection.
The improvements he suggested also made the seat more comfortable, thus reducing fatigue among the aircrew.
This was a particular concern of the pilots and their crews, but Barwood found it an uphill struggle to convince the authorities of its importance. With 15 per cent of aircrew experiencing back pain every time they flew, an apparently mundane medical issue had become a serious handicap to operational efficiency. Eventually it was agreed that the seats should be modified.
Notwithstanding these significant contributions, it was as an "air crash detective" that Barwood made his unique contribution to aviation medicine.
For 15 years he investigated all ejections that occurred during that period, analysing the performance of the seats and the physical effects on the aircrew.
His painstaking examination and reconstruction of each example of ejection, to identify any fault or weakness, allowed him to suggest improvements both to equipment and procedures. In 1976 Barwood received the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators Air Safety Award, a gold medal awarded annually to a person who had made an outstanding and practical contribution to the safer operation of aircraft and the survival of aircrew.
The citation concluded: "There can be no doubt that there are many aircrew who are alive today whose survival can be directly attributed to the devotion, skill and inventiveness of Group Captain Barwood."
Antony John Barwood was born at Norwich on April 1 1915 and educated at Oundle. In 1935 he went to St Bartholomew's Hospital Medical School, graduating five years later.
It was during the first months of the war that he came to the attention of the RAF. He was cycling home when a Hampden bomber crashed in a nearby field. The crew escaped the burning bomber, but the rear gunner was trapped by his foot. Barwood entered the aircraft and removed the gunner's boot with a medical scalpel. They had just escaped when the bomber blew up.
Barwood joined the RAF in 1941, and after a brief spell on a bomber station he underwent high-altitude decompression tests at Farnborough before joining No 90 Squadron in Norfolk as its medical officer. It had just been equipped with the high-flying US B-17 Fortress, and he became involved in testing aircrew oxygen systems, often flying above 30,000ft.
On one occasion he was due to fly on a test flight when a senior doctor "pulled rank" and took his place. The aircraft broke up in the air and all the crew were lost except the doctor, who was able to bale out.
In February 1942 Barwood left for the Middle East as medical officer with No 220 Squadron. He survived a crash landing in the desert and on another occasion had to parachute to safety, thus becoming a member of the Late Arrivals Club and the Caterpillar Club, an unusual distinction for a non-aircrew officer.
In July 1942 he left for India and served in Calcutta and Ceylon, returning to England three years later to work in London at the Central Medical Establishment.
In 1948 Barwood started the first of many appointments at the Institute of Aviation Medicine, where he worked on the development of aircraft escape systems.
He also participated in several survival exercises in the Canadian Arctic and Norway, testing cold-weather flying suits and equipment.
Later he tackled the problem of heat stress of aircrew flying from bases in the desert and the tropics. Flying at high level required thermally insulated clothing, but the time spent on the ground at readiness and waiting for take-off created very stressful conditions, which were a threat to operational efficiency.
Barwood devised the air-ventilated suit to be worn under the outer garments. The nylon garment had a ventilating harness of narrow-bore tubing through which cool air was passed. In May 1950 Barwood and a team of aviation doctors conducted a trial of the suit at Khartoum, when cockpit temperatures in the Vampire jet fighter they were using reached 56 degrees Centigrade.
Barwood started to specialise in ejection seats in 1952. He established a close personal and professional friendship with Sir James Martin, the pioneer of the seats, which lasted throughout their lives.
After a brief spell in Germany, Barwood returned to the Institute of Aviation Medicine in October 1958 and worked in the applied physiology section, eventually becoming its head. In 1961 he was seconded to BEA to conduct studies on pilot fatigue; he gathered information during many flights on the Comet and Viscount.
Having retired from the RAF in 1980, when he was 65, Barwood changed his uniform for a suit and continued his work as a civilian consultant for another five years, commuting weekly from his home in north Norfolk.
He was appointed OBE in June 1952. In 1950 he received the RAF's annual safety award, the LG Groves Memorial Prize; and in 1969 he was awarded the RAF Medical Branch's Richard Fox-Linton Memorial Prize for his outstanding contribution to aircrew safety. He was a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society.
In uniform, Barwood did not cut the traditional figure of a military officer. An outspoken man, he was never afraid to battle bureaucratic obstinacy and sometimes relished expressing a disdain for higher authority. This made him a popular and greatly respected figure amongst the aircrew, whom he always saw as being his most important and valuable customers.
In Norfolk Barwood enjoyed growing vegetables on his allotment, his favourite being runner beans. He was a keen salmon fisherman who visited the same beat on the Tweed every year.
Tony Barwood died on August 30. His wife, Nora, whom he married in 1946, died in 2006, and he is survived by their two daughters.
What a nice bloke. Had to laugh about some of the anecdotes. A charmed bloke (& brave) indeed.
Being one of the last aircrew being trained in the Vampire at RAAF Pearce we knew a lot about the oven like conditions and inadequate air conditioning of the Vampire. Luckily most of our course was conducted in the RAINY winter months where we got to know how badly the Vampire leaked. However my point was that the MACCHI was being run at RAAF Pearce at the same time with the instructors complaining about even hotter conditions (true) - poor things. They got to have the car ports built for them way back then. At NAS Nowra we just had to lump it. Probably it never got that hot at Nowra but it sure did rain back in those days. ;D
Last Edit: Sept 19, 2008 22:06:09 GMT 12 by FlyNavy
Great story. I see Barwood was a member of the Caterpillar Club. A UK parachute manufacturer presented airmen that had been saved by their equipment with a caterpillar badge. There is a book on the subject and well worth the read, with some amazing survival stories.