Posted By: spamerhammer

each episod Video: DivX 5 960x544 29.97fps| Audio: Dolby AC3 48000Hz stereo 384Kbps| 55min| 1100MB| English

part1Airplane to Air Force
After their first successful powered flight, the Wright Brothers turned to the U.S. Army, well aware of the potential military value of their airplane. In 1903, with no looming threat of war, the government rejected their $100,000 asking price, but within five years, the entire Western world would embrace the idea of powered flight. World War I ushered in the airplane's first military roles as armies used planes for aerial reconnaissance, and then for artillery spotting. With aviation still in its infancy, aerial combat took longer to develop, but the evolution of fighter tactics was inevitable as planes became more sky-worthy. The results transformed combat from fly-by pot-shots to fast, furious duels. By the end of the war, the airplane had been defined as an "eye in the sky" - a role that remains as vital over the deserts of the Middle East today as it was over the trenches of France in 1914. Every country recognized the potential of the warplane, and the growing necessity to take control of the skies.
part2Air Force to Air Power
World War II was an era of rapid innovation and terrible destruction from above. From the invention of radar to the birth of the fighter ace, and from Hitler's blitzkriegs to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, this was the period where national air forces came of age, where individual planes coalesced into unstoppable squadrons, and where wartime tactics were dictated from the sky down. Evolving from their roles as spotters, reconnaissance planes transformed into bombers. Germany rained shells down on London, the Allies executed precision bombing raids by day and frightful carpet bombing missions by night. Pathfinders led bomber squadrons to their targets, and fighters protected other planes as they flew. By the time America dropped the atomic bomb - once and for all illustrating the effectiveness of destruction from above - each airplane had its own role, and together, they had made the world a much smaller place to wage war.
part3Jet Age
Missed opportunities, a vital arms race and the secrets hidden among the spoils of war come vividly to life in the third program of WARPLANE. In the latter days of World War II, Britain and Germany feverishly advanced early dreams of a jet airplane, a defining piece of mid- 20th-century technology that would revolutionize existing airplane roles and create an entirely new generation of mission-specific machines. With the world in the grip of the Cold War, combat planes became faster and more agile, spy planes cruised over enemy territory at dizzying heights and dazzling speeds, and jet-powered helicopters entered military service. Designers, test pilots and combat crews took huge risks as they pushed the technological envelope, and within 58 years of Orville Wright's historic flight at Kitty Hawk, man had broken through the boundaries of both sound and space.
part4Age of Stealth
Over the trenches of World War I, the "eye in the sky" had been indispensable. Since that time, developers have worked endlessly to make planes harder to spot and shoot down. Speed worked at first, then the ability to fly high, but each advance was eventually met by a counter-advance that all but neutralized it. Until, that is, the birth of the computer. With the computer age came avionics - systems to control planes that humans could never fly. These systems, combined with new materials, designs and paints, as well as the unwavering commitment and singular vision of men like Skunk Works' Ben Rich, gave rise to the most recent revolution in military aviation - stealth planes that are all but invisible to enemy eyes. Like the jet engine before it, stealth technology has transformed warfare, and together with ever-advanced precision ordnance and purely autonomous planes, has positioned the world's most advanced air forces for a future where in-cockpit pilots may no longer be necessary.