Saturday, July 28, 2007

I almost hate to do this.

I was only skimming down this list of interesting stuff but I just had to check out Why is a fighter jet parked (Google Earth coordinates 48.825183,2.1985795) in what looks to be a residential neighborhood lot near Paris?

First things first, plug those coordinates into Google Maps, turn on the satellite view, and zoom way in. Yep, there it is.


Hmmm... Certainly looks like it could be a fighter jet, but maybe it's just a mockup of some kind for some reason. Googling fighter jet france leads to a list of what else? Fighter jets developed or used by France. Checking out the links... looks like a Mirage III. More on the Mirage III here.

Zooming in as far as possible, you can just see, down in the lower left corner, that the object of interest appears to be about the same size as that scale bar that says 50 ft, so maybe it's for real.


Panning around from those coordinates in satellite view, you can see that the surrounding neighborhood does look sort of residential, but right here things look a tad industrial to my eye. And those lanes painted diagonally across the parking lot? Doesn't look very residential to me. Wassup widdat?

Well, the Paris Air Show is kind of a big deal, something to do with that maybe? Doesn't seem real likely, given that Le Bourget, site of the Paris Air Show, is 26 km down the road:


Turn on the hybrid view, pan around a bit, and look for some street names.


Googling Chemin Desvallières brings up a list of links:

  • Theoretical and numerical study of strain localization under high ...

  • Dissociating the effect of different disturbances on the band gap ...

  • Optimal Location of Actuators and Sensors in Active Vibration ...

  • Threshold Region Determination of ML Estimation in Known Phase ...

  • Welcome to IEEE Xplore 2.0: Music and Model-Order Selection for ...

  • Energy Citations Database (ECD) - - Document #20685984

  • EXPERIMENTAL DEMONSTRATION OF THE DEPENDENCY OF THE NEGATIVE ...


Looks like Laboratoire de Mécanique de Paris X, 1 Chemin Desvallières, 92410 Ville d’Avray, France turns up in an awful lot of those links. I'm thinking that something that looks like "Laboratory of Mechanics" is suggestive, but I didn't find an actual website for a laboratory of mechanics. Google did, however, map out directions for me from 1 Chemin Desvallières, 92410 Ville d’Avray to 48.825183 N, 2.1985795 E, a distance of 50 whole meters.


Not that I've actually figured out yet why they've got a jet fighter parked in their parking lot, but the hunt's been fun so far.

7 comments:

Steve Bates said...

To my untrained eye, the fighter looks rather old. Given your Google results, could they be doing a sort of postmortem examination of the effects of long, hard use? I'd think that would be useful information.

But what do I know, anyway? Only this: I'll bet you're looking for trouble by even pursuing the matter...

hipparchia said...

me? look for trouble? never. it often finds me without mt ever having to look for it.

i didn't spend a lot of time tracking down what kind of aircraft it might be, but i had much the same thought that you did, some kind of stress analysis, especially if it's an older one.

Bryan said...

While I would be more certain if it had Libyan markings [a long story] it does seem to be a III, rather than the current 2000. They have been replaced in the French air force and would probably be a good subject for stress testing based on flying hours.

hipparchia said...

hard to tell by comparing the undersides [and slanted ones at that] with a tiny grainy photo, but i thought it looked a tad more like the iii than the 2000.

grasping at even slimmer straws, the wing insignia could possibly be swiss instead of french, further ruling out the 2000, as the swiss seem to have flown only the iii.

mostly, it just made sense that the older no-longer-in-production plane was the one likely to be sitting around in parking lots.

Bryan said...

I think you're right about the Swiss, which makes sense because they have modified their III's for shorter fields and ground attack and the research was done in France, so the factory would have Swiss test bed aircraft available for donation.

The French have a blue dot in the center of their roundel, and the Danes didn't buy IIIs.

hipparchia said...

ok, i've got
them all memorized now.

not.

sheesh! how does anybody remember which ones to shoot at?!

Flavio Endo said...

Hey.. this is a University.. and the jet.. is a old Mirage...
check the picture at this file
http://www.u-paris10.fr/servlet/com.univ.collaboratif.utils.LectureFichiergw?ID_FICHIER=2198