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Video : The 'BONE' Takeoff!

 Thx Louis

Forwarded message - From: Louis Nève

the 'BONE' Takeoff!

Bad to the 'BONE' Takeoff!
For some, there is absolutely nothing sexier or more powerful than a Rockwell B-1B Lancer, also known as the "Bone" or "BOne," in full afterburner on takeoff. Taking a look at the photo, it's really difficult to not agree.
At Nellis Air Force Base outside of Las Vegas, Nevada you can get very spoiled in the sense that you get to witness the BONE incinerating dinosaurs on a fairly regular basis–whether it's at their homes in Texas, South Dakota, or Nellis. It is not a moment basking in all of the Bone's thunderous, soul-numbing, reheat glory is ever wasted.
This photo was taken during the Defensive Counter Air (DCA) Vulnerability Period at the U.S. Air Force Weapons School, usually the last VUL before graduation.
In fact, the takeoff we witnessed looked a lot like this one–minus all of the photographers and tail-spotters getting tossed around like tumbleweeds; we witnessed ours from the perspective (and safety!) of the Nellis control tower. There's no denying the B-1B is a badass airplane, and for many reasons. There's also no denying the fact we never, ever get tired of seeing this girl light 'em up and get airborne to go rain harsh judgement on her assigned targets.

 Weapons School differs greatly with another well-known Nellis AFB asset, 'Red Flag'. - Red Flag exercises are large force exercises bringing in visiting units throughout the U.S. Air Force as well as other Department of Defense branches and allies from around the globe. Red Flag concentrates on training younger crew members, incoming wingmen, giving them the equivalent of their first combat missions.
Weapons School accepts a very small number of students, just over 100, from a pool of very experienced instructors and instructor pilots. Weapons School is a purely U.S. service endeavor. Foreign nationals are not allowed into classes as students are exposed to everything in the U.S. arsenal.
One might equate Red Flag as equivalent of a Bachelor's degree and unit-based internal training and experience as a Master's degree. In that continuum Col. Garland describes the USAFWS curriculum: "We have Sunrise Mountain and Nellis AFB control tower provide the backdrop as a C-130 lifts off shortly before sunset. In this case the aircraft carries Wyoming Air Guard markings but is part of the 29th Weapons Squadron. Weapons School students represent pilots and crews from every platform and major discipline in the Air Force, from transports like the C-130 to space based assets. (Richard VanderMeulen)graduate level academics, the combination of MIT and Harvard PhD academics all rolled into one. When a student graduates after five-and-a-half months of intense training they are by far the very best combat systems experts that not only the Air Force or United States has to offer, but on the planet. That is why five-and-a-half months of training is the most intense training I have ever been through."
During the first five months of their tenure, Weapons School students have opportunities to drop or fire many of the weapons systems, bombs or missiles, carried by their respective aircraft platforms. During ME Phase however, all weapons are simulated. Large numbers of participants and support personnel on the ground throughout the 2.9 million-acre, 15,000 square-mile Nevada Test and Training Range during ME Phase preclude carriage of live ordnance for safety reasons.
The massive range represents an incredible training asset for the USAF Weapons School. Col. Garland notes, "The Northern Training Range affords us the most phenomenal, the most combat mission realistic training that you can imagine with the exception of actually being in combat. That's what we simulate every day. Without that capability the Air Force would not have the might that it has today."
Well after sunset an F-15E Eagle of the Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron 422nd TES, lights up the deep twilight.
On top of the grueling five months of intense training leading up to the capstone, the ME Phase turns things up another notch, moving to nearly 24/7 operations with many long hours on planning and briefing missions. Upon returning from each long mission, students and instructors again spend many hours debriefing and examining the mission in detail before beginning the cycle again.
Notes Col. Garland, "When you go through, it is all you can handle and all you can do. And we do it for a reason; if you can handle this level of tactical expertise for the USAF you can do anything. Our students go on to perpetuate that expertise and level of experience wherever they go".
Seven missions flown during ME Phase are a combination of roughly 60 percent night missions, 40 percent day missions, with Close Air Support and Defensive Counter Air missions generally flown during daylight to aid in de-confliction of participating aircraft. The missions or Vuls (Vulnerability periods during which aircraft and personnel are vulnerable) described by USA.F Weapons School instructor Capt. John "Limey" Christianson consist of:

Who are the students accepted into the USAF Weapons School? Competition to enter the Weapons School is stiff with only a small percentage of applicants ultimately being selected. Col. Garland describes the selection process; "We take the most seasoned, most experience instructors the Air Force has to offer. It takes several years of seasoning, training and preparation before we'll even consider taking you as a candidate to come to this premier school." He continues, "The students we get are the very best the Air Force has to offer when they start. Our job is to make them even better!"