OPERATIONAL ASPECTS OF THE JET STREAM

C. A. Stiefelmaier

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: The existence of the jet stream in the Western Pacific has been known for many years. It first became a matter of concern to aviation during World War II, when our B-29's began operating over the Japanese Islands. As a result of the reports gathered during these operations, shortly after the war ended, a fairly extensive study of the jet stream was undertaken by this Division of Pan American World Airways. From 1946 through 1950 our extended range forecasting and Research Section spent considerable time in detailed analysis of the 500 and 300 mb charts over the Western Pacific area with the aim of developing analysis techniques which would permit us to locate the Polar jet stream with sufficient accuracy to utilize it for our operations in that area. During 1949 and 1950 when the runway at Wake Island was closed to operations for a period, all of our flights to Tokyo were re-routed directly from Midway to Tokyo and normally returned Tokyo-Midway. Several times during this period our extended forecast sections charts indicated that it would be possible, by utilizing the jet stream, to make the trip from Tokyo to Honolulu, without a fuel stop at Midway and a few direct flights were made with components in the vicinity of plus 80 knots being experienced. With this sample to indicate the possible future operational usefulness of the jet stream our research was accelerated, leading to the development of orecasting techniques which, in 1953, made it possible for us to schedule the first commercial non-stop flights Tokyo-Honolulu. Since then we have been utilizing the jet stream over the Western Pacific during the period November through March on a regularly scheduled basis.
Published in: NAVIGATION, Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 4, Number 6
Pages: 227 - 231
Cite this article: Stiefelmaier, C. A., "OPERATIONAL ASPECTS OF THE JET STREAM", NAVIGATION, Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 4, No. 6, 1955, pp. 227-231.
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