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The Gentleman Sawyer
11-14-2007, 08:20 PM
First Deepwater, then the spy satellites, now this. Unbelievable.

http://www.military.com/NewsContent/0,13319,155898,00.html?ESRC=army.nl

The Bigfella
11-14-2007, 08:36 PM
104 isn't very hot - the ambient exceeds that in lots of places a lot of the time

skuthorp
11-14-2007, 08:47 PM
And then there's our second hand Seasprites
Nelson faces a systems failure







The $1 billion Seasprite helicopter program has been such a fiasco, it may be best to admit defeat and find an alternative, writes Patrick Walters
------------------------------------------------------------------------
| May 16, 2006



IT'S Brendan Nelson's billion-dollar headache. The whole future of naval aviation is the No.1 priority in the Defence Minister's mind as he still grapples with the aftermath of the 2004 Sea King tragedy.
Since he took up the job barely four months ago, Nelson has already made three trips to the navy's aviation base, HMAS Albatross, near Nowra on the south coast of NSW.

These have involved sorting out a replacement for the ageing Sea King fleet (the European MRH 90 is the likely successor), investigating the future of the troubled Seasprite program and examining the morale of hard-pressed navy aviators.

With $950 million already spent on the navy's Super Seasprite project and the helicopters now barred from further operational flying, Nelson faces tough decisions in the coming weeks.

More than a decade in the making and now running six years late, the Seasprite has earned the title of defence's most troublesome legacy project, those that originated before the election of the Howard Government in 1996 and before the sweeping reforms of the Defence Materiel Organisation carried out during the past three years.

And plenty more, including 'vintage' fighters
http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,20867,19145841-28737,00.html

The indonesians are buying superior Russian aircraft, why don't we?

Vince Brennan
11-14-2007, 09:57 PM
Thats not a fiasco.... the USCG's "Deepwater" project, now THERE'S a fiasco worthy of a Clancy book, except that no-one would have believed it.

Governmental spending programs have become such total cock-ups as to be simply not believable. If it puts money in a friendly contractors company, it seems that no intelligent supervision will ensue.


And before you start screaming about Bush and his idiots, remember that a lot of this stuff started with Clinton and HIS idiots, and his idiots were every bit as idiotic as the present idiots.

The following group will, I'm confident, equal or surpass them both for excellence in idiocy. Gawd: if we actually got a competent Congress and Executive in the same administration, I think the country would implode!

skuthorp
11-14-2007, 10:14 PM
It's not incompetence I'd bet, it's corruption. Too many favours owed, keeping the military/industrial machine turning over, but I think here it is incompetence. The military have no idea what they are spending it seems or on what. But the admin are civilian and they are the ones to blame.

L.W. Baxter
11-14-2007, 10:24 PM
My brother tells me during his deployment in Bagdad he saw that the Iraqi police force had been equipped with hundreds of new Ford pickups on the American dime...the only trouble was, they were made for unleaded fuel, and gasoline in Iraq is all leaded (if you can believe that!!!)

Anyway, none of those trucks lasted more than a few months. Lead poisoning, I guess.

skuthorp
11-14-2007, 10:35 PM
Probably the result of the same rigid rules re the FEMA thread. Most likely not built specially but sorced from dealers all over (with their nice commission), from vehicles built for the home market. And some pen pusher in Washington probably has no idea of the difference even if he/she'd heard about it. Stuff-up this one, but another welcome order for Ford coming soon.

BrianW
11-14-2007, 10:43 PM
If this is the worst of the problems this helicopter encounters while being introduced, it will be light years ahead of many of the introductions in the past.

The Blackhawk mentioned in the article killed plenty of our troops by slinging main rotor blades, and stabilators that slewed down on their own at high speeds.

Oyvind Snibsoer
11-15-2007, 03:43 AM
The Lakota is based on the EC 145 / MBB BK-117, which is by all other accounts a highly versatile and functional helicopter. What it lacks in size it certainly takes back in agility. My BIL is a medevac nurse on a BK-117, and they fly and land that thing in some crazy places, and weather for that matter.

Andrew Craig-Bennett
11-15-2007, 04:26 AM
As we surely all know, the business of military procurement is a snakepit.

Anything that appears in the Press must be taken with a pinch of salt, espescially if it might favour a rival contractor.

Milo Christensen
11-15-2007, 05:41 AM
So the military now gets criticized for trying to save money? Poor barstards just can't win when the decks stacked against them, can they?

The "reporter" fails to mention that equipping the birds with air conditioners, which the commercial versions have, will still be faster and cheaper than the design and build of an all new helicopter.

The major criticism ought to be that they're buying it from EADS, which doesn't fill me with a lot of confidence.

Nothing to see here, minor technical problem that's being addressed in early adoption trials, let's move on.

John of Phoenix
11-15-2007, 11:41 AM
Why they do this is beyond comprehension. This is SO screwed up on SO many levels it's fantastic.


The UH-72A Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) is a commercial aircraft designed to conduct light general support tasks in permissive, non-combat environments. Those tasks include civil search and rescue, personnel recovery, evacuation, counter-drug and limited civil command and control operations in the conduct of Homeland Security.
Commercial European design = metric nuts and bolts.
US Army = SAE tools.

104*F = inop. You have to be kidding. Does it melt in the rain?

Cuyahoga Chuck
11-15-2007, 12:10 PM
Thats not a fiasco.... the USCG's "Deepwater" project, now THERE'S a fiasco worthy of a Clancy book, except that no-one would have believed it.

Governmental spending programs have become such total cock-ups as to be simply not believable. If it puts money in a friendly contractors company, it seems that no intelligent supervision will ensue.


And before you start screaming about Bush and his idiots, remember that a lot of this stuff started with Clinton and HIS idiots, and his idiots were every bit as idiotic as the present idiots.

The following group will, I'm confident, equal or surpass them both for excellence in idiocy. Gawd: if we actually got a competent Congress and Executive in the same administration, I think the country would implode!

DOD spending for weapons and hardware is usually layed off in as many constituancies as is possible. That means that the approppriate members of congress are likely to jump on board and override any veto and will not squawk no matter how bizzare the program gets. Presidents are thusly constrained and most have no interest in taking up a fight they can't win. Just remember how many of these fiascos erupt but are not able to put a dent in the program being criticized. Bucking any defense contracting takes a very brave dude.
Case in point: that crazy, twin-engined, baloney slicer the Marines have poured money into for decades.

BrianW
11-15-2007, 12:21 PM
Why they do this is beyond comprehension. This is SO screwed up on SO many levels it's fantastic.


Commercial European design = metric nuts and bolts.
US Army = SAE tools.

While I"m basically in agreement, the tool issue has been dealt with before...

http://i.pbase.com/o6/20/35420/1/3211130.4PWd4KYD.3211130.umd020001.jpg

htom
11-15-2007, 01:49 PM
There's a safe helicopter?

John of Phoenix
11-15-2007, 02:12 PM
The Coasties first bought the French Dauphine in the late 70's. As I recall it was Aerospatiale's shrouded tail rotor that sealed the deal though I never understood why that was so important. They've upgraded them over the years and added the Augusta 109 several years ago.

A long term commitment to metric on their part, but why the Army would want to add a so so bird to the fleet AND have to add in the cost of another tool set to boot... well, it's beyond me.

DerekW
11-15-2007, 02:26 PM
It's a flying ceiling-fan, and they can't cool the cockpit without AC? Hmmm. :)

BrianW
11-15-2007, 04:49 PM
The fenestron on the Dauphine never seemed very special to me, except to give the aircraft is unique whine. It works though. That airframe as delivered was way under-powered due to the engines being switched to meet Federal procurement rules. It's still under-powered, but they've got the engines dialed in better now.

The Agusta A109s the CG uses are leased, and not maintained by the Coast Guard.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v136/BrianW/stuff/h68_1.jpg

I sort of find the whole thing interesting, about the Army being used as the means to procure a whole new fleet of helicopters to be used for Homeland Security. If there's a story here, that's the one that peaks my interest!

Michael s/v Sannyasin
11-15-2007, 04:54 PM
Now they are deploying the Osprey. I saw one flying down the Hudson (something you don't see every day), then read about the deployment in the news later on.

I had a computer flight simulator for the Osprey a bunch of years ago and could barely fly that without crashing :-) Thing was tricky!