mercredi 2 mai 2012

Summit of the Last Chance!

January 15 & 16. 1994

Numerous conferences have been held since several decades with
the hope that the Middle East conflicts between Israël, Syria and
Lebanon will cease... As of today, little only has been resolved but
tensions are still tangibles and would probably never end...

One of this meeting saw U.S. president Bill Clinton encountering his
Syrian counterpart Hafez El-Assad, bringing a lot of interesting aircrafts 
on Geneva Airport's apron, including both U.S. presidency's 
Boeing 747 VC-25A, with several Lockheed C-5B Galaxies. On
the Syrian side, president Assad arrived on board Boeing 747SP
YK-AHA, with Tupolev 154M YC-AIC as back-up aircraft. 

U.S. President Bill Clinton and wife Hillary disembarking 
from "Air Force One"

The U.S. press, always accompanying the president during his visits,
travelled on board Northwest Airlines Boeing 747-227B N635US,
probably the sole visit of this carrier at Geneva. The french press came
with the Air France Airbus A300B4 seen in the background, while
the regular TWA Boeing 767-200 and Swissair A310 complete the line-up.

November 24. 1990

Another meeting occured 4 years earlier. Material and cars
arrived by cargo aircraft, once again with Galaxies for the U.S.A.
and Ilyushin 76TD YK-ATD of Syrianair Cargo on the other side...

...then with Syrianair Boeing 747SP YK-AHA during
a powerfull take-off which surprised me so much, as I expected a lower 
pass over the IL-76 for this picture!

lundi 2 avril 2012

Geneva "Air Force Base"!

August 8. 1990
In the heighties and nineties years, Geneva Airport often welcomed military
aircrafts displayed during neighbouring Summer airshows.
The World Aerobatics Championships held at nearby Yverdon airfield ended with
an airshow, with the highlight being the display of two MiG 29s showing the famous "Cobra"
figure. The accompanying team traveled on board Aeroflot's Ilyushin 76 CCCP-76497
seen here together with Mig 29 "304 Blue". It was the first and only visit of the type
ever in Switzerland.

August 12. 1990

The same airshow also received another type rarely seen in Switzerland,
the Fairchild A10 Thunderbolt, with a pair based at Geneva. 80-168 is seen here nose
to nose with Swissair's Mc Donnell Douglas MD81 HB-INK being towed
from the maintenance hangar for its next passengers flight.

June 13. 1991

Military exercices for the Swiss Air Force occures generaly one or
two times per year at Geneva, training pilots for diversion on civil
airports. From left to right: Northrop F5F Tiger II J-3067, Hawker Hawk
U-1262, which stayed for only a handfull of years as the jet trainer and
light transporter Pilatus PC-6 Turbo Porter V-632, with the usual
Fedex Fokker 27-600 OO-FEG in the background.

January 13. 1994

In preparation for the summit between U.S. President Bill Clinton
and his Syrian counterpart Hafez el-Assad, Swiss Air Force's AS-332L
Super Pumas, including T-321, were operating flight for the Police, while
U.S.Air Force's Lockheed C-5B Galaxies, including 86-0015, 
brought limousines, helicopters, troups and other necessary materials
to insure the U.S. delegation's comfort and security. 

April 15 and 20. 1984

U.S. Navy's Convair C-131F "Samaritan" 141001 has made two rare visits
to Geneva in the space of 5 days. This 1955 built sample was based at Sigonella,
Italy, hence the title of the tail. The C-131F was the military model of the civil 340
and was the very last piston engined Convair model to visit the airport.

September 1st 1993

Another very rare U.S.Navy visitor here was Lockheed VP-3A Orion
150511, seen here together with Mc Donnell Douglas C-9A Nightingale
71-0876 during a beautiful clear day!

mardi 14 février 2012

Very rare visitor!

June 21. 1995

The gigant Antonov 22, which was the largest aircraft of the world in the
mid-sixties before the arrival of the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy, has made only
two visits at Geneva to date. The first was an Aeroflot sample on March 31. 1970,
coming to load physical subnuclear items supplied by the European Nuclear
Research Center of Meyrin, near Geneva. The aircraft left the next day to Moscow.
The second visit was on June 21. 1995, this time Antonov Design Bureau's
UR-09307, which came to load seven limousine cars for the Gabon's Presidency.


After several delays on that rainy day, the particular sound of the four 15'000 HPs
Kuznetsov NK-12MA could finaly be heard miles out on final for runway 05 and
my excitation growed rapidly. I have cared to be at the beginning of a 36 exposures
K64 roll and let run my camera's engine all along the aircraft approached me and used
the complete roll just for the landing!

Exceptionally, I have exchanged my usual bike for a car to be
quickly back on the apron to shoot the aircraft taxiing. Two engines
have already been shut down.

As told before, the AN-22 is fitted with four Kuznetsov NK-12MA
engines, with contrarotative blades, the most powerfull turbines ever built!

View of the 7 limousines, including a Rolls-Royce, just before loading

Nice difference of size between the already large airport's
passenger buses and the AN-22!

June 22. 1995

What a pity! Low stratus clouds, more usual here between November
and April, were covering the airport! This shot was taken from Palexpo's
Hall 7, which was under construction at that time.

Luckily, the "Bise" (North-East wind) "woke-up", removing the
unwelcomed clouds, whose let place to a bright sunshine! Looking
to the background, another "Russian" visitor was present on that unforgettable day,
namely GATS (Gulf Aviation Technology Services) Ilyushin 76TD RA-76832

The crew was extremely kind to let me climb on board
to take some cockpit shots!

The push-back from its parking position on the INNER taxiway 
took several minutes! Then it was towed on Link 5 to start the engines.

All four engines started, ready for taxi!

Giving way to the regular Aeroflot Tupolev 154M. Here, I have paid
my omission to put ears's protection... Having stayed quiet some times
close to these powerfull engines, I have noticed that my audition was greatly
affected when the aircraft was away. It tooks long minutes before coming back to normal
and during a moment, I thought I had definively lost it!...

...And I was far from the end of my emotions!!! Believing that the take-off
roll for an 8 hours flight to Libreville will be quiet long, I posted me near the
opposite threshold. Having been cleared to line-up and take-off on runway 05, it
has begun its roll but suddendly veered in the grass on the right of the runway,
closing it for quiet a while! Finally, the crew was able to put back the aircraft
on the runway themselves and it took-off on a really shorter distance than
I have expected!

dimanche 25 décembre 2011

Merry Christmas!!!

December 10. 1995

Finnair chartered this specialy decorated Mc Donnell Douglas MD82
OH-LMN for Father Christmas, seen here upon arrival with his Elfs
in traditional clothes and polar dogs.


dimanche 4 décembre 2011

U.S. Duets!

February 1992, Olympic Winter Games in Albertville, France.
Adding to the regular United Airlines Boeing 727-222 N7646U,
rare visitor Boeing 747-122 N4727U brought US teams for
the games on the 16th...

... and they went back home 8 days later on board Boeing 767-322(ER)
N642UA, seen here with the tail of Delta Air Lines Airbus A310-222

December 12.1992
Very rare visit of American Airlines DC-10-30 N137AA,
which came on a weather diversion, seen here with the
regular Boeing 727-222 N7646U of United Airlines.

January 15. 1994
While an unidentified TWA Boeing 767-231ER vacates
runway 23, freshly repainted Boeing 727-222 N7256U
in the newly adopted livery taxies to its allocated stand.
United started to serve Geneva in February 1992.

September 25. 1993
Charter carrier American Trans Air operated at least 4 flights
during that month with its Lockheed L-1011 Tristar 50 and
Boeing 757-212ER, with N191AT and N750AT seen here
parked together on the wide-body's apron.

samedi 26 novembre 2011

Geneva based calibrator!

Delivered new in February 1968, Grumman G159 Gulfstream 1
HB-LDT was used for calibration duties for almost 30 years,
replacing De Havilland Dove HB-LAS. It is seen here on
September 19. 1985, flying low over Geneva airport to check
its approach instruments. Owned by the Federal Office for
Civil Aviation and carrying appropriate titles, it was operated
later on by Swisscontrol and titles were changed.

August 11. 1984
View of the flight engineer working place, which looked
quiet old with the graphics measure system, now replaced
by computers! The rear of the aircraft was configured with
a few seats, because it has also served as a VIP transporter
at several occasions.

May 9. 1994
The cockpit also looks obsolet comparing to modern

Avril 4. 1997
Spending its last hours on Geneva Apron... HB-LDT still carries
its Swisscontrol title and also its new canadian marks C-FAWE,
preparing for its transatlantic ferry flight to its new base in Quebec for
operation by Propair, with whom it is still current today.

Very uncommon engine run-up!

February 5. 1993
Most probably the most uncommon engine run-up I have
ever seen in my photogrpaher's carrier!!! Right
Rolls Royce Dart 529 was tested on the "hulk"
of Gulfstream 1 I-MGGG. After serving for a few
years by the local Police for antiterrorism exercices,
it was completely broken-up in 2006.