Here’s a quick look inside Sage Cheshire Aerospace and what we do. This presentation was made for our September, 2014 appearance at the 58th Annual SETP (Society of Experimental Test Pilots) Symposium & Banquet in Anaheim, California.
On 26 June 2014 the 9th Physiological Support Squadron held a change of command ceremony at Beale Air Force Base in Northern California. Lt Col Brian T. Musselman passed his command via Col. Jody L. Ocker, Commander, 9th Medical Group to the new and current commander of the 9th PSPTS Lt. Col. Lance Annicelli.
Sage Cheshire Aerospace has collaborated with the 9th PSPTS on high-altitude projects and our technology is helping train a new generation of high-flying pilots anticipate and mitigate risk in the lethal environment in which they operate.
The 9th PSPTS does amazing work around the globe and we support their mission with practical lessons learned on Stratos as well as with realistic training mockups. The origins of physiological support of high-altitude reconnaissance can be traced back to the 1950s when the U-2 first went into service, venturing past the Armstrong line where humans cannot exist without the proper equipment.
There are many specialty units like the 9th PSPTS in our armed forces and they don’t always get the credit they deserve. Congratulations to outgoing Commander Lt Col Brian Musselman on a job well done and sincere wishes to incoming Commander Lt Col Lance Annicelli for success in your new post.
The U2 fuselage mock up built at Sage Cheshire Aerospace. Studies from testing conducted on Red Bull Stratos with the Sage Cheshire Aerospace science and engineering team along with chief physiologist Dr. Andrew Pilmanis contributed to changes on high altitude flight profiles. Operating with higher cabin altitude pressure as on the Red Bull Stratos capsule has reduced DCS decompression sickness for long high altitude flights.
If you’re aviation nuts like we are, or even if you’re not, the opportunity to learn some factoids about our favorite planes is always thrilling.
This is the primary reason we love and support the Flight Test Historical Foundation (FTHF) and its efforts on behalf of the Air Force Flight Test (AFFT) Museum, currently located on Edwards AFB near Lancaster, CA.
What kind of stuff does it take for planes to take flight? The right stuff.
What kind of stuff does it take for a museum to honor our flying heritage and the brave men and women whose flight testing took us to the clouds and beyond? More of the same.
We at Sage Cheshire Aerospace, the creative, technical and mission-crititcal team behind Red Bull Stratos, have devoted some of that stuff to helping FTHF build the right facility to carry out its core mission.
For us, it’s the opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the planes that we built as models when we were kids or that kept us up at night dreaming of being able to fly them and what that would be like.
Did you know they have a “Blackbird” SR-71, and that you can walk up to it and see what made it so cool? Did you also know that on occasion pilots who flew these planes are available as a docents and can answer your questions about them?
Did you also know that you could personally sponsor this plane and have your contribution to FTHF memorialized in front of the plane?
Sure, it seems like we’re asking a lot of rhetorical questions, but some of our friends honestly didn’t know that there is such a collection of aircraft and where such a collection was. And that happens to be right here in the Antelope Valley of California’s high desert, square in the heart of aerospace country.
Our neighbors are Lockheed Martin’s Skunkworks, Northrop Grumman, NASA Dryden and lots of innovative start-ups that are developing the next generations of aerospace technology to take us to the stars and beyond.
These are exciting times. And we need to look back as much as we look forward to make sure we remember the lessons learned by those who came before us and whose work and sacrifice gave us the tools on which to build the future.
There are lots of ways to help FTHF, big and small, from shopping at Amazon.com to making the kind of gift that helps the foundation attract matching funds from larger foundations. In fact, stage one of their campaign is nearly complete and if they reach their current goal by July 1, really good things will happen for them. Wouldn’t you like to be a part of that success?
We know you do, that’s why we made this little appeal. Some of the easiest ways to help are simply staying in touch with the Foundation on their social media channels:
FTHF on Facebook
FTHF on Twitter
Hey, as long as you’re shopping online, use their AmazonSmile link which will kick back funds to the foundation seamlessly and at no additional cost to you while you shop. What could be better?
You can also “get friendly” with the Museum (as we have) –>>
If you are passionate about flying or if you’ve flown some of the planes in their inventory, please consider making a meaningful gift to FTHF so that these planes can be enjoyed by everyone and the museum can become one of the most important tourist attractions in the area.
There is an urgency to our appeal. We need to help the Foundation raise about $100k between now and July 1 in order for them to receive a significant bonus from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. There are lots of tangible rewards for your tax-deductible gifts. If you can’t help, perhaps you know someone who can. Let us know if we can help you help us help them.
April 1, 2014
Citing advances in theoretical physics and warp-drive propulsion systems, Sage Cheshire Aerospace announced today a joint venture with its partner Emory Motorsports to develop a hybrid high-speed transportation platform for NASA. Taking lessons learned from Red Bull Stratos about space suit design and life support systems in hostile environments, the team has developed all-new tools, procedures and a vehicle which will keep astronaut-explorers safe as they warp space-time.
Art Thompson, president of Sage Cheshire Aerospace said, “This thing is gonna be so cool, in more ways than one.” Using a modified Porsche power plant and the newest warp-drive technology, the vehicle, code-named “Huevos,” will be able to transport a small family to the outer reaches of the galaxy in no time, with some luggage.
Rod Emory of Emory Motorsports commented, “This is a design that stems from the first outlaw ‘Special’ constructed in 1998 on the occasion of Porsche’s 50th Anniversary. We want to explore space, but we want to do it in style.”
The announcement comes at the same time that a new exhibit featuring the Red Bull Stratos capsule and space suit opens at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C.
On April 2, 2014, a special exhibit featuring Red Bull Stratos will open to the public inside the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. The capsule and spacesuit will eventually be on permanent display at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.
Please support the museum and visit the exhibit. Take photos of yourself by the capsule and post them to our Facebook page.
The Red Bull Stratos installation at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in Dayton, OH will be available through March 16 of this year. The exhibit was launched with a presentation featuring Col. (Ret.) Joe Kittinger, Art Thompson and Jonathan Clark. We encourage interested parties to visit the display, leave comments on our facebook page and to support the good work of the museum and all of its staff and volunteers.
By Susan Richardson
On 3 October 2013, Mr. Thomas Bowen passed away following an extended battle with respiratory illness. The high altitude reconnaissance community lost a true champion and mentor. Mr. Bowen entered the U.S. Air Force on 8 August 1949 as a life support technician. His first assignment was Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ. He supported B-29 bombers, including the Enola Gay that was assigned to his squadron. He was also assigned to Mountain Home AFB, ID and Plattsburg AFB, NY, supporting B-47s and B-57s. Mr. Bowen’s first overseas assignment was with the South Korean Air Force, supporting P-51s. In 1956, he attended Pressure Suit School at Maxwell AFB, AL and disappeared into the “Black World.” His high altitude physiological support included all the early CIA pilots. In 1960, he was waiting in Norway to recover the aircraft of U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers, who was shot down over the Soviet Union.
In 1974, as a civil servant, Mr. Bowen returned to the U.S. Air Force’s high altitude U-2 reconnaissance program at Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ. In 1976, when high altitude military reconnaissance was consolidated under the 9th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, he moved with the U-2 program to Beale AFB, CA. Mr. Bowen was a highly respected mentor, sharing his experience and knowledge with both life support and physiological training personnel. During his career, he personally trained hundreds of high altitude pilots, reconnaissance systems officers, and passengers. He recently trained high altitude jumper, Felix Baumgartner, who went on to break the high altitude free fall record [under Red Bull Stratos], jumping from a balloon 24 miles above the Earth in 2012. Mr. Bowen retired from his position as Technical Director of the 9th Physiological Support Squadron, Beale AFB, CA, in 2012, and was awarded the Outstanding Civilian Service award for demonstrated significant accomplishments, leadership, unusual competence, and significant impact upon the Air Force mission throughout his career.
In total, Mr. Bowen’s career spanned nearly six decades of service and includes 21 years active duty in the United States Air Force, 4 years with the Central Intelligence Agency in life sciences, and 36 years as Chief of Life Sciences and Technical Director for U-2/TR-1/ER-2/SR-71 high altitude intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (HAISR) programs. He provided technical guidance to Lockheed’s Skunk Works and the David Clark Company on aircraft life support systems, full pressure suit (FPS) development, and survival equipment. He has been primary consultant to all U-2 and SR-71 mishaps that involved life support systems. An innovator and forward thinker, he pushed to design mission-specific life support equipment including the seat kit configuration for harsh environments, the automatic deployment system, and the implementation of the zero-zero ejection seat capability for U-2/ER-2 aircraft.
Additionally, Mr. Bowen was instrumental in the development of FPS-specific training programs including high altitude chamber flights, egress training, water survival, and field escape and resistance programs tailored to the HAISR mission. He has ensured the advancement of life support systems for HAISR aircraft for the CIA, USAF, NASA, and international U-2 programs for the United Kingdom and China. In 2006, Tom was honored by the Aerospace Physiology Society with the Fred A. Hitchcock Award for Excellence in Aerospace Physiology.
Mr. Bowen was a true visionary and leader; his legacy of technical support to the DoD Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance programs will never be surpassed.
On Saturday, November 16, 2013, the International Air & Space Hall of Fame will induct Art Thompson, Colonel Joe Kittinger and Felix Baumgartner for their distinguished work on the Red Bull Stratos project.
Art Thompson will share the spotlight with other Class of 2013 inductees who’ve bravely pioneered significant milestones in aerospace and aviation. Other notable inductees are Capt. Sullenberger, Co-Pilot Jeff Skiles and crew of US Airways Flight 1549, US Navy ace Dean “Diz” Laird, Apollo16, NASA’s Mission Control and WWII triple-ace Bud Anderson among others.