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   Undertoad  Saturday Nov 8 11:33 AM

11/8/2003: Prop plane in wet air effect

xoxoxoBruce found this one at the Weather Underground image gallery, of a C-130 taking off at Anchorage Airport and causing a really wild "corkscrew" effect.

plthijinx  Saturday Nov 8 01:28 PM

that is an awesome pic! not very often (ok, never) do you get to see the "spiraling slipstream" off of props!

xoxoxoBruce  Saturday Nov 8 03:25 PM

Looks like water trailing off the end of the flaps too, for some reason.

quzah  Sunday Nov 9 06:13 AM

Originally posted by xoxoxoBruce
Looks like water trailing off the end of the flaps too, for some reason.
Fuel. Someone forgot to put the gas cap on.


Elspode  Sunday Nov 9 07:54 PM

I'm guessing that the air was supersaturated, and that the water flashed instantly into vapor inside the low pressure area in the wake of the prop tips (and also the lower pressure behind the trailing edge of the flap corner).

tjennings  Monday Nov 10 10:50 AM

I love that effect. You see it quite often in pictures of prop planes on aircraft carriers. I've also seen a little vortice like that develop behind the rear wing of a Formula One car on a very humid day.

Fighter jets will often produce them during hard maneuvers, but I've seen a 747 make them on takeoff at JFK as well.

CharlieG  Monday Nov 10 01:41 PM

I used to go watch the jets land at LGA - I saw vortex condensation lots of times

r9703410  Monday Nov 10 02:20 PM

Talk about a BIG plane!

CharlieG  Monday Nov 10 02:44 PM

Originally posted by r9703410
Talk about a BIG plane!
Actually not that big! A 747 dwarfs it, never mind a C-17 or C-5

C-130 is a short haul medium lift plane. Of course it can take off and land in places that a 747, C-17 or C-5 wouldn't even think of trying - It holds the record as the largest plane to take off and land on a carrier deck (sea trials on the USS Forestall) - I also think it now holds the record for airplane longest in production (I _THINK_ it beat the AN-2 a few years back)

breakingnews  Monday Nov 10 03:18 PM

Really cool pic.

I love it when I'm on a plane that's ascending or descending through clouds - watching the airflow off the tip of the wings is fun.

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