Monday 30 May 2011

Skylon concept looks a bit like something from Gerry Anderson

Mention in the previous comments thread of the similarity between the ESA/UK Skylon concept and Fireball XL-5 reminded me of this even more striking similarity (basically the same concept, I think, just a few years back) with the doomed Fireflash atomic airliner:

Personally I think the world would be a better place if more stuff looked like it had come out of Gerry Anderson shows.

Let's just hope they can get the wheels down for landing, though. Curse that Hood!

Yes, it's a slow news day.


  1. Hi Alistair, CTMK here. Just found your blog.
    I always think children's authors have such amazing imaginations and insights. Building on Thunderbirds as a basis for real life futuristic inventions makes me think of those who say read outside your genre to give a greater wealth of background knowledge to your own ideas/writing, which makes a great deal of sense.
    BTW Tim's just PM'd you on my behalf. :O)

  2. I always thought the shuttle's biggest problem was that it didn't look like an Anderson vehicle, more like a flying brick with a delta wing stuck on.

    If it doesn't launch via an incredibly over-elaborate, over-engineered and far too complicated process, it's not real engineering.

  3. You're quite right there, Ben. Ideally the shuttle should have been assembled on the day of its launch, with the astronauts being inserted into the ship via moving chairs so they don't have to shuffle their unconvincing puppet legs.

  4. You'll never convince me the architect for this on Cambridge Science Park hadn't been influenced by
    Right by the A14^W runway and a nearby footbridge ^W gantry to drop the top wing on...

  5. Anon - that's excellent.

  6. Every time I fly into Schiphol via the Polderbaan runway (which is about 10 miles from the rest of the airport) I think this traffic control tower looks like a Captain Scarlet prop:

  7. This bridge from Bratislava looks more HG Wells than Thunderbirds, I suppose:

    But the SaturnV/Shuttle Crawler is top Thunderbirds stuff:

    Not to mention what the Russians used to put their Buran/Energia complex from horizontal to vertical - see third pic down here: