Originally Posted by JohnnyS
Yeah, I guess there haven't been all that many aircraft designers and true geniuses who were college professors, played multiple musical instruments, and were into rocketry, brain waves, baton twirling, ball games, English plays, philosophy and Mah Jong. I figured one of you sharpshooters would pick up on the Mah Jong thing, but couldn't leave it out. Somehow, my reference to the Zero (Zeke) and the Ki-43 (Oscar) Itokawa designed being called "the Army Zero" escaped detection. His being called the father of Japanese rocketry would have given it away immediately, I'm sure. The Oscar was the top scoring Japanese aircraft of WWII. Good job, JohnnyS; and you are up. Thanks; Ernie P.
Question: What famed aviator designer do I describe?
(1) He is considered to be, at minimum, a genius.
(2) He designed one of the deadliest aircraft to fight in a major conflict.
(3) The above (2) despite working exclusively in the aircraft industry for a relatively short period of time.
(4) He left industry to become first an assistant, and then a full, professor in a college.
(5) He had a very wide range of interests, which ranged from ball games to musical instruments to philosophy.
(6) He was a noted and prolific author; and usually a best selling one.
(7) The aircraft he designed was often mistaken for another of the same nation; and, in fact, was often compared to the other even when its identity was known.
(8) His name was in the international news toward the end of the last century; and, indeed, within the past five years.
(9) The aircraft he designed was noted for being exceptionally maneuverable.
(10) But he is now best known for another endeavor.
(11) He also excelled with musical instruments; playing a variety of them.
(12) Around 6,000 of the aircraft in (2) were built.
(13) From the study of brain waves to baton twirling, his interests were widespread. In school, he dedicated himself to studying many different subjects, and still skipped grades.
(14) In the 1950’s, he even got involved in rocketry.
(15) He studied Mah Jong, English plays and philosophy.
(16) He left the university professorship and founded an institute.
(17) After his death, of the things named for him, some are literally out of this world.
Answer: Hideo Itokawa
Ki-43 Hayabusa (隼, "Peregrine Falcon
") was a single-engine land-based tactical fighter
used by the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force
in World War II. The army designation was "Army Type 1 Fighter" (一式戦闘機); the Allied reporting name
was "Oscar", but it was often called the "Army Zero" by American pilots for its resemblance to the Mitsubishi A6M Zero
, which was flown by the Japanese Navy.
Like the A6M, the radial-engined Ki-43 was light and easy to fly, and became legendary for its combat performance in East Asia in the early years of the war. It could outmaneuver any opponent, but did not have armor or self-sealing tanks, and its armament was poor until the last version, which was produced as late as 1944. Allied pilots often reported that the nimble Ki-43s were difficult targets, but burned easily or broke apart with few hits. In spite of its drawbacks, the Ki-43 shot down more Allied aircraft than any other Japanese fighter and almost all the JAAF'S aces achieved most of their kills in it.
Total production amounted to 5,919 aircraft. Many of these were used during the last months of the war for kamikaze missions against the American fleet.
The Ki-43 was designed by Hideo Itokawa
, who would later become famous as a pioneer of Japanese rocketry. The Ki-43 prototype was produced in response to a December 1937 specification for a successor to the popular fixed-gear Nakajima Ki-27
Nate. The specification called for a top speed of 500 km/h (311 mph), a climb rate of 5,000 m (16,400 ft) in five minutes and a range of 800 km (500 mi). Maneuverability was to be at least good as the Ki-27.
Hideo Itokawa (糸川 英夫, Itokawa Hideo?
, July 20, 1912 – February 21, 1999) was a pioneer of Japanese rocketry
and of the Japanese space program. In Japan, he was popularly known as Dr. Rocket, and he has been described in the media as the father of Japanese space development.
The asteroid 25143 Itokawa
, named in honor of Itokawa, is notable as the target of the Hayabusa
Born in Tokyo
, he graduated from the Tokyo Imperial University
in 1935, having majored in aeronautical engineering
. During World War II
, he was involved in designing aircraft at the Nakajima Aircraft Company
and designed the Nakajima Ki-43
Hayabusa "Oscar" fighter.
In 1941, he became an assistant professor of the Imperial University of Tokyo
, and became a professor in 1948. He retired from his post in 1967 and established an institute.
In 1955 Itokawa worked on the Pencil Rocket
for Japan's space program.
Itokawa was a genius who skipped grades in school and studied many topics. He wrote 49 books, and was, many times, a best-selling author.
Topics that Itokawa became interested in or took as a hobby, include such sports as basketball
, as well as orchestral arrangements and such instruments as cello
(a string instrument invented in Japan). He was also interested in baton twirling, brain waves
, English plays, Mah Jong
, rocket engineering
and novel writing.
, literally "Peregrine Falcon
") was an unmanned spacecraft
developed by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
(JAXA) to return a sample of material
from a small near-Earth asteroid
named 25143 Itokawa
for further analysis.
Hayabusa, formerly known as MUSES-C for Mu
Space Engineering Spacecraft C, was launched on 9 May 2003 and rendezvoused with Itokawa in mid-September 2005. After arriving at Itokawa, Hayabusa studied the asteroid's shape, spin, topography, colour, composition, density, and history. In November 2005, it landed on the asteroid and collected samples in the form of tiny grains of asteroidal material, which were returned to Earth aboard the spacecraft on 13 June 2010.
The spacecraft also carried a detachable minilander, MINERVA
, which failed to reach the surface.