Another milestone in British aviation history ... the testing at Chelgrove, UK, April 4, of?
SV Pilot prepares
CU Fastening bands on legs
SV Pilot takes seat in ejector apparatus
SV Ditto being fastened
CU Pilot at the ready
LV Pilot ejected into air, falls by parachute
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Background: Another milestone in British aviation history ... the testing at Chelgrove, UK, April 4, of a new type of rocket-fired aircraft ejector seat. It has been developed by James Martin of the Martin-Baker Aircraft Company. Ejector seats designed by him have already saved 418 lives.
The man who tested it - thirty-eight year-old Doddy Hay, a former Flight-Lieutenant in the British Royal Air Force; and a highly experienced test parachutist. The rocket-driven seat he used has been designed to save the lives of pilots who get into trouble at very low altitudes. It would be suitable in vertical take-off fighters and bombers of the future.
Once he's strapped in and ready to go--it's up to Hay himself. Three-hundred feet up, his parachute opens automatically--from then on it is just another drop. He has done three-hundred-and-eighty like it before.
Nineteen seconds from ground to ground...the first man to leave the earth by rocket. Older seats at present in widespread use is fired by an ejection gun to a height of about 90 feet; and the aircraft's speed must be at least 100 miles an hour if the parachute is to open at low height.