Blue Angels Practices
The Navy has cancelled the remaining 2013 performances of its Flight Demonstration Squadron, the Blue Angels. The squadron will continue to train to maintain flying proficiency until further notice at its home station in Pensacola, Fla.
Recognizing budget realities, current Defense policy states that outreach events can only be supported with local assets at no cost to the government.
This is one of many steps the Navy is taking to ensure resources are in place to support forces operating forward now and those training to relieve them.
The Navy believes there is value in demonstrating the professionalism and capabilities of our Navy and Marine Corps Naval Aviation team, thus inspiring future generations of Sailors and Marines. The Navy intends to continue aerial demonstrations in the future as the budget situation permits.
Blue Angels facts:
- An estimated 15 million spectators view the squadron during air shows each year.
- The highest maneuver performed in an air show is the vertical rolls performed by the Opposing Solo, up to 15,000 feet and the lowest maneuver performed in an air show is the Sneak Pass, performed by the Lead Solo at 50 feet.
- The fastest speed flown during an air show is about 700 mph (just under Mach 1; Sneak Pass) and the slowest is about 120 mph (Section High Alpha).
- The basic acquisition price of a single F/A-18 Hornet is approximately $21 million.
- The F/A-18 can reach speeds just under Mach 2, almost twice the speed of sound or about 1,400 mph.
- An F/A-18 weights about 24,500 pounds empty of all ordnance and aircrew.
- The smoke is produced by pumping biodegradable, paraffin-based oil directly into the exhaust nozzles of the aircraft where the oil is instantly vaporized into smoke. It provides a traceable path for spectators to follow and enhances safety of flight by providing a means by which solo pilots can see each other during opposing maneuvers. It poses no hazard to the environment.