· A comprehensive study of all company
· Includes incidents and anecdotes
Tentative flights hops
by Edwardian-era pioneers led to the development of a world-class industry.
Spearheading this were the test pilots who ventured into the unknown in
British-built aircraft for their maiden flights. As well as those that became
household names, Testing to the Limits
also brings to the fore many ‘unknowns’ who risked everything to take a
prototype into the skies.
The culmination of a
20-year project, in two volumes Testing
to the Limits charts the careers and endeavours of over 400 company test pilots. Inter-related biographies brim with types first
flown, incidents and anecdotes, including first-hand quotes. It is the most
comprehensive study on the subject ever produced.
From Short biplanes of
1909, the book traverses the abundance of prototypes in the
1920s and 1930s, the advances of World War Two from Spitfire to Vampire, the
post-war challenges of the ‘sound barrier’ and the pressures of the ‘Cold War’
to the supersonic Concorde, the Harrier ‘jump-jet’ and today’s fly-by-wire
Designer-pilots, flight test
observers, the Empire Test Pilots’ School, the relentless pace of production
test, engine test-beds and the origins of the ejector seat, the service test
institutions and a glimpse of the future - all aspects of these extraordinary
flyers are examined.
Chris Yeo, BAE Systems Typhoon test
pilot, provides a foreword to this ground-breaking title which is lavishly
illustrated with over 300 photos. Testing
to the Limits is not just a tribute to a band of elite aviators it is also a
vibrant commentary on the failures and successes of the British aircraft