Electronic Airborne Goldfish, by John Clements

Electronic Airborne Goldfish, by John Clements
Book published by Paterchurch in 2001, 124 pages. Paperback (N5688)

Brand New Book

This book tells the fascinating story of one man’s career in electronics and radar - from RAF Cranwell apprentice to Air Commodore! John Clements made operational flights during the Second World War in early radar equipped Sunderlands, survived a ditching in a Botha and flew in 30 different types of aircraft....

From the rear side cover: Air Commodore A J B Clements C Eng FlEE Dip EI FIMgt joined the RAF in 1937, at the age of 15, as an aircraft apprentice and was trained at the Electrical and Wireless School, RAF Cranwell, as a wireless operator mechanic. In January 1940, with five other newly graduated apprentices of his entry, he was attached for on-the-job training in ground and flight test­ing of production equipment, to the small group of scientists and techni­cians at RAF St Athan who were just completing the development of the first operational airborne radar equipments.

In the summer of 1940 he flew on convoy patrols in a Sunderland flying boat as the radar operator. Within a few years two of his colleagues were killed on flight testing duties and he experienced a ditching in the Bristol Channel in 1942. By the beginning of 1945 he had carried out some 300 flight tests of 10 different airborne radar equipments in 18 different aircraft.

By 1958 after a tour at the Radar Research Establishment, Malvern, where he was engaged in the development flight trials of airborne radar equipments, he had operated, although never formally aircrew, a total of 22 different radio equipments in 29 different aircraft ranging from biplanes to jets. In his last RAF posting he held a top signals appointment as Air Officer Signals, RAF Support Command.

Following his retirement from the RAF he was a member of the staff of Marconi Defence Systems for over ten years where he initiated the pro­posal for Brimstone (the Rockwell Hellfire missile with the Marconi active millimetric radar seeker) as an air launched anti- armour missile for the RAF's Tornados and Harriers. This was followed by six years as an independent defence consultant. He finally retired in 1993, on his 72nd birthday, after 56 years involvement in defence electronics...
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