The owner/builder of a one-of-a-kind
monoplane called the Starjammer claims the aircraft's custom,
on-board sound system can create sounds as loud as 200 decibels, which
would likely make it the loudest airplane in history - louder than
Concorde, and louder even than the Space Shuttle!
Elgin Wells, aerobatic performer and
accomplished musician and composer from Atlanta, Georgia, has built the Starjammer
over the course of 14 years. It began life as a One Design project, very
heavily modified over time with a lengthened fuselage and completely
redesigned wing. Most unusually, the Starjammer also incorporates
a large speaker and amplification system, including modified police car
sirens, which play music he composes to accompany his aerobatic
performances. Wells says his system pushes 1,000 watts of power through
the onboard speakers.
The Starjammer also has 225 super
bright LED lights installed in the winds and fuselage, and a smoke
system with five streams - one in the center, one on each wingtip, and
two on the horizontal stabilizer - to create a super-sensory airplane
for both day and night air show performances. The LED lights are
MIDI-controlled to synchronize with the music.
Even though the plane is loud,
significant effort has been made to quiet the engine. Wells' slightly
modified 220hp Lycoming IO-360 Wells has dual 4-ft Swiss mufflers
incorporated into the belly pan. The engine turns a Hoffman hub with MT
blades (and he's investigating putting LEDs on the prop as well).
Wells is bringing Starjammer to
Oshkosh for its world public debut and plans to have it on display near
the IAC building next to AeroShell Square. Stay tuned for more
information about this one-of-a-kind screamer, which appears to be
another of the many must-see (and must-hear) aircraft attending the
World's Greatest Aviation Celebration.