10 YEARS AGO — 2001
Robotic refueling for fleets: An automated fuel-tank filling robot targets urban public transit networks and vehicle fleets. From Robosoft in France, the Oscar MK6 has a dripless and vaporless rubberized coupler for 31-gallon/min fueling that eliminates spills. The robot has an extended travel run to fill up buses with low floors. It can fill from the left or right, as well as adapt to different types of fuels and nozzles. And, for safety, the nozzle withdraws if the vehicle moves during refueling.

30 YEARS AGO — 1981
Pershing II hypersonic-tunnel tested: A heavily instrumented 25% scale model of the forward reentry-vehicle segment of the Army’s Pershing II has been tested in a hypersonic wind tunnel at the Air Force’s Arnold Engineering Development Center. Pershing II is designed to improve the range and accuracy of the Pershing I/1A now in the Army’s inventory. The improved ground-to-ground, nuclear-armed missile is currently in the engineering-development phase. Tests at the Arnold Center determined control-surface effectiveness and aerodynamic loadings on tail-panel surfaces at speeds to Mach 10 and simulated pressure altitudes to 150,000 ft. Thirty-three aerodynamic configurations of the missile were tested with the model subjected to angles of attack and yaw from –2 to 26° and a roll range from –180 to 180°.

50 YEARS AGO — 1961
Freezing of bearing lubricant in a liquid-oxygen missile is prevented by a special heater built by General Electric Co. for Aerojet-General Corp. The bearing is part of the Lox pump drive in the Titan missile. Its two heaters use small-diameter hypodermic-needle tubing for sheaths, and resistance wire is encased in rocklike insulation. Fitting into machined grooves on the bearing sleeve, they have an output of 40 W/sq in. of heater surface.

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