Taken on Mar. 6, 2017, the cool composite image in this post shows the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, the Blue Angels, number 1 jet on the flight line at Naval Air Facility (NAF) El Centro, Calif.. The Blue Angels are in El Centro for their annual winter training to prepare for the 2017 air show season.
Noteworthy the Blue Angels were formed in 1946, making it the second oldest aerobatic demonstration team in the world, after the French Patrouille de France, which was formed in 1931. The Blue Angels’ six demonstration pilots currently fly the Boeing (former McDonnell Douglas) F/A-18 Hornet, typically in more than 70 shows at 34 locations throughout the U.S. each year, where they still employ many of the same practices and techniques used in their aerial displays in their inaugural 1946 season.
As we have previously reported, in 2016 was announced that the Blue Angels are slated to upgrade to Super Hornet soon.
As the actual jets, the new aircraft will be modified into a configuration specific to the Blue Angels role that requires the installation of a smoke generator and the removal of the fighter’s gun and missile launchers.
Photo credit: Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Daniel M. Young / U.S. Navy
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