Concorde on a hot day

At the time of writing its now 20 Aug 2009, 6 years ago I was at Heathrow watching Concorde.

During the very hot summer/autumn days, Concorde’s usual 7pm take off from Heathrow was some times delayed any where from 30 mins – 2 hrs.

This didn’t happen on a regular basis, it happened randomly.

When this happened it was pain waiting for her as I never knew when she was coming, but when she did come the wait was worth it. She took off at twilight or just after the sky was going in to a pinky colour before that turned in dark blue after sunset, you could see fire from her after burners, it was a magical site.

(Above are some of the photos I took of the take off at these times)

If you was lucky and the evening was very clear you could see vertical tiger stripes in the line of after burner fire as it came rushing out of the engines, wow it was an awesome sight.

When I got home after seeing the take off I looked on a few Concorde forums and was told by Concorde Engineers that Concorde was delayed due to it being “too hot” for the engines.

I found this very funny and giggled as after burner fire from Concorde’s engines was almost as hot as rocket flames so I couldn’t understand why it was to hot for Concorde not to take off at the normal time.

But Concorde Engineers said hot weather can cause things like vapor lock in the fuel system, it can also reduce engine power due to the hot air being less dense than cold air = less power .

So delaying the take off would stop these problems from happening.

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