Scientists at NASA have developed a gun built specifically to launch dead chickens at the windshields of airliners, military jets and the space shuttle, all traveling at maximum velocity. The idea is to simulate the frequent incidents of collisions with airborne fowl to test the strength of the windshields.
British engineers heard about the gun and were eager to test it on the windshields of their new high speed trains. Arrangements were made, and when the gun was fired, the engineers stood shocked as the chicken hurtled out of the barrel, crashed into the shatterproof shield, smashed it to smithereens, crashed through the control console, snapped the engineer’s backrest in two and embedded itself in the back wall of the cabin.
Horrified Britons sent NASA the disastrous results of the experiment, along with the designs of the windshield, and begged the U.S. scientists for suggestions. NASA’s response was just one sentence, “THAW THE CHICKEN!”
Here’s the video:
Chris Cane’s Note:
When I was teenager, some fifty odd years ago, my dad worked for Pratt & Whitney Aircraft (Now United Technologies) near Montreal Quebec. He worked in with the PT6 Engine development team. These were exciting time at P&W because they had a new engine that was a star design for small turboprop planes, trains and Parnelli Jone’s Turbine Car at the 1967, Indy 500.
You might want to listen to
Anyway, I’m digressing as I usually do. The folks in the “lab” or test cell at P&W had this humongous compressed air cannon with a barrel perhaps twenty feet long that fired “calibrated” chickens at the intake of jet engines to determine the damaging effect and help design engines with some immunity to chickens flying through the air at very high speeds.
One day, I got to fire the chicken! I had a blast, so to speak.
“The chicken gun was first used in the mid-1950s at de Havilland Aircraft, Hatfield, United Kingdom. It was fired with a correct countdown from a ‘pill box’ housed in the woods at de Havilland’s. The chickens were killed shortly before firing and obtained from a local farm also at the edge of the woods. After firing, the jet engines were taken away and examined for damage. High-speed cameras recorded the complete action.”
Anyway, I could post more poop but who would read it?