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The QMC Far Infra-Red experiment consisted of an interferometer that used a tracking mirror to view the solar eclipse via a quartz window fitted into the roof of the cabin of Concorde 001. Having assembled the equipment the initial tests were carried out at QMC, London. The equipment and experimenters then moved to the Aerospatiale factory in Toulouse. There we had a room as a laboratory. At first we did more tests with the equipment outside the factory on a trolley. It was then installed in 001 for test flights. We spend some weeks in Toulouse during this process.

This webpage shows some photos I took during this period. I suspect most people will mainly be interested in Concorde, so most of the images I have included are of the plane!

The first two photos feature Concorde's nose from two very different viewpoints. The first photo was taken while I stood of the wing of 001. The second, a more conventional view as I stood in front of it.

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View of the nose of 001 in hanger

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Front view

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View of the flight deck instrumentation of 001 at the time

The following pair of photos provide side views. These were taken while Concorde's nose position movement was being tested as it stood outside the hanger.

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Nose low

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Nose almost completely raised with visor rising

As Concorde enthusiasts will know, the nose could be ‘drooped’ when the plane was on the ground or taking off/landing to aid the pilots being able to see the ground. During supersonic flight the nose and a visor were raised to give improved aerodynamics.

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Taxing out for a test flight

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After the test flight

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View of the engines and under the wing

The next set of photos show some of the people involved in the experiment.

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John Beckman (QMC) and Jim Hall (RSRE) on the wing

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Tony Marston (QMC) and Peter Reader (RSRE)

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Two views of the instrument.

The above shows two views of the Far Infra-Red instrument. The photo on the left is of John Beckman, Jim Hall, and Tony Marston working on testing the instrument. At the time it was sitting on the concrete just outside the Aerospatiale factory (St Martin). The photo on the left shows the equipment installed in the cabin of 001. Beside the equipment are Peter Reader and M. Herubel (Aerospatiale, Toulouse).

Jim Lesurf (ex-QMC student)
16th May 2013

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