1963 ... swabbies load nukes!


... ooo - scary!

... made to snap on over a bomber crew's exisiting helmet and visor this is a system for preventing flash blindness. From the early days of the Strategic Air Command it was anticipated that pilots flying in a nuclear combat arena would be at risk of being temporarily blinded by the intense light of nuclear detonations. Both weapons exploding on targets as well as nuclear tipped SAMs and air-to-air missiles were a hazard. A common early practice was to have the aircrew wear an eye-patch so they had one protected eye in reserve. Pull down shades were a low tech solution which left the crew reliant on instrument flying. The pictured helmet was developed in the 1980's. When sensors detected a sudden rise in ambient light levels the coated lenses would electronically be rendered opaque for several seconds. 

... my photo-illus work (matters of milliseconds)

... now that I am doing illustration work for the Aerospace Industry I keep thinking that my 'expertise' on nuclear weapons will come in handy. But these days they mostly want Sesame Street warm and fuzzy - instead of spine tingling terror. Oh well.


... zooooom!

... all from the excellent Flickr collection of Pcarsola LINK

all images- Right click- open in New Window or Tab = super colossal size!

1959 ... Khrushchev pollinates!

... here is Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in what looks to be his visit to America's heartland in 1959. Below is a link to an excellent documentary on the visit from the folks at PBS and 'The American Experience'


... silent and deadly!

... this third submarine is most notable for it's possible use of the Doomsday Kanyon torpedo. A weapon so terrible- I don't even want to talk about it (read more here)

these excellent illustrations are by Hi Sutton who has lots more at his website 


1986 ... B-1B "Lancer"


... study your Civil Defense!

... as we all know - the first guys out of the Shelter always get eaten by Giant Mutant Cockroaches... or Zombies!

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1987 ... greetings from Ron!

1986 ... Soviet Civil Defense!

... more from this endless series of Soviet Civil Defense posters. No way around it; digging slit trenches and then covering them with a layer of earth looks way too much like digging your own grave!

all images- Right click- open in New Window or Tab = super colossal size!

1950 ... "How to Protect Yourself in an Atomic Attack"

... Grim - that was the mood of Civil Defense advice at the start of the Cold War. Five short years after the end of WW2 and many people felt that an atomic slug-fest with the 'Reds' was inevitable.

Here's a helpful film to prepare us for what is coming in 1951 - in grim black and white narrated grimly by Edward R. Murrow.

1946 ... "the wing will fly!"

... the swirl of controversy and regret about the Flying Wing and it's ill-fate attempt to become America's first true intercontinental bomber will never fade! Plenty of evil doing and dooers by Convair and corrupt politicians. But the long and short of it was that without modern computerized controls the tailess design would have been hell to control at the high altitudes that would be required for the nuclear mission.

90 min docu. tells the whole dramatic tale.


1958 ... cold-war soap opera!

all images- Right click- open in New Window or Tab = super colossal size!

1953 ... "blowin' the chickens around the barnyard!"

... results of a fun little project of my photo-illustration work. In cooperation with professional model maker Guy Pernetti and diorama artist extraordinaire Michael Paul Smith. LINK

... not that this sort of thing didn't really happen!


... USSR: CD practice!

... this looks like one of those "insert caption here!" contests.


1954 ... a fine pickle!

... I think this is a fictional account; but no doubt inspired by the run-away Castle-Bravo test earlier in 1954 - LINK


1955 ... stuff of nightmares!

... Operation Teapot: Turk shot, 43 kiloton - Nevada testing site.

... many more: LINK