green glow

Oh yes, any Atomic Powered airplane of the future would have to be serviced by mechanics sealed inside a forty ton lead coffee can using huge clumsy robot arms. [Only worked in an artist's drawing]
Check out the 'comment' from Bill Higgins which gives detailed info on monster robots for handling radioactive airplanes!


Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey said...

And they had people working on this.

See the "Beetle," built by General Electric for the U.S. Air Force Special Weapons Center for the Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion program. f257897691 714ce9b28f 2802597b1a d25698e3d2 a375ecec0b

Here's a 1963 technical report on the Beetle (along with a couple of less-impressive shielded vehicles):

An Analog article, pointing out its similarity to a Heinlein story:

Popular Science had a nice article on it in May 1962:

james vaughan said...

... fascinating, thanks!

Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey said...

As a photographer, you may be interested in this pair of photos:

1. A smiling model in a bathing suit, posing with the Beetle:

Note the tracks on the pavement left by the tractor treads.

2. A reverse angle shot, showing gentlemen of the press:

That's right-- all the photographers, engineers, and PR men are wearing cozy warm overcoats and hats, and there is AN INCH OF SNOW ON THE GROUND!

One can only admire the professionalism of the smiling model, and hope that her high heels keep her toes warm.