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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20070927/us_time/v22ospreyaflyingshame

I've riden in Hueys, M-60 tanks, various submarines, and on an aircraft carrier over the last two and a half decades, so I think I can say I've worn the uniform and gone in harm's way. If this program is half as bad as it sounds... any Jarheads out there have any comments?
 

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V-22....

Yeah, and read the article again.....All the crap mentioned regarding the V-22's problems were back when the program was in its infancy.... Those bugs have been worked out. If the V-22 is so bad then why has it gone to full scale production? BTW - I ought to know a little about the V-22, I work where they're being built!!!!!!
 

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V-22 article

Well its obvious the author of the V-22 article didn't do his homework. He talks in one paragraph about the tehcnological challenges of getting an aircraft to be able to "rotate its engines and wings"... The V-22 does not rotate its wings, only its nacelles and rotors rotate from helicopter to aircraft mode and back again, the wings remain stationary!
 

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Yeah, I understood it was not the "widowmaker"
as in early production.
I think they are really cool!
 

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Just because it got built doesn't mean it shouldn't have been killed 10+ years ago. The same process happened with the Bradley.
 

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It's the Harrier all over again. 25% of them were lost in accidents. Down time was so great that no more than 25% of the pilots could stay qualified to fly them. Did nothing of significance in Desert Storm or anywhere else. The Corps doesn't seem to believe in spending much on maintaince: the Brits never had anywhere near the problems the Corps did. Read this weeks Time Mag. The Osprey's problems are still there.
 

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I'd be careful of using Time Magazine as my source of information on military projects, I really would. Not often very trustworthy.
 

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I'd be careful of using Time Magazine as my source of information on military projects, I really would. Not often very trustworthy.
Perhaps you could elaborate on that Clyde. I've been following Osprey problems for years, there's nothing new in the article, it's just a comprehensive summary of what's been said over the years.
 

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Time simply isn't to be trusted on facts - they are sometimes right, sometimes wrong, almost invariably careless.

V-22 may or may not ultimately sort out - it is certainly a system that pushed the envelope pretty hard and that is usually a recipe for trouble. But Time isn't the place I'd look to for a good handle at where things had been or were likely to go.

Myself - I am glad I don't have to ride the things. But then I hate and fear all vertical lift birds. The things repeatedly tried to kill me in my green-suit days and I see no reason to believe Ospreys would treat me any differently than a number of Hubschraubern did.
 

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I'll be interested to they act in an operational environment (Iraq, Afghanistan). If the maintenance problems don't manifest there, then I think they'll be okay.
 

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I took another look at teh hatchet job Time did, and wonder just who they have stock in - Sikorsky?

And one place they are squalling about strikes me as written buy someone with essentially ZERO knowledge of assault helo operations. NONE of the troop-carriers going into hot LZs ahev nose guns. Cobras do, Apaches do, the old "Hogs" that were the gunships before the Cobra came on scene have nose turrets (and so did the experimental and highly unsuccessful AH-47 armed Chinook) - but not the troop carriers. Teh Osprey is a troop carrier and while I might favor some waist guns to supplement (or instead of) the ramp gun, I really don't see why an Osprey troop carrier needs a nose gun that other troop carriers (including Chinooks, CH-46s, UH-60s, CH and even MH-53s) seem to operate OK without. Straw-man issue. JMO.
 

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Typical anti-military media hatchet job.

The "problems" they bitch about are inherent in getting more speed and range from a rotorcraft. You can't autorotate and the higher disk loading is going to toss around more dust and sand. The alternative is to plod along in a conventional helicopter with every hand launched missile, radar guided gun and every farmer with an AK shooting at you. And to either refuel inflight or forget about longer range missions.

As for forgetting long range missions they also forget Desert Storm and Afghanistan, real operations, not just conceptual ones. Long distance operations to remote areas are impossible with conventional helicopters. Desert Storm ate up most of our mine sweep RH-53's and the lack of helos in Afghanistan - until the helos, support, fuel... were airlifted in and bases set up - was a severe limitation on operations ignored by those complaining that we didn't "get" Osama and all the Taliban. It's pretty hard to "get" someone when you can't go faster that he can.

I worked on the VSTOL A program, was one of the NAVAIR engineers responsible for killing the Lift-Cruise Fan Type A VSTOL program. One of the Type A variants was supposed to do the V-22 job and its cost would have made the V-22 look like a Sam's Club clearance special.

In the initial proposals for that program the tilt rotor proposal from Bell was the best of the bunch for the USMC mission - there were serious problems with all other concepts. One one side all the turbofan types and the tilt props or tilt wing had impossible problems operating over loose surfaces, plus lots of other drawbacks. On the other side of the disk loading range, making a low disk loading system go fast meant, in essence, bolting a helicopter rotor/transmission/control system on a conventional aircraft and somehow getting the whole mess to go 300 kts. and hover - the sizing penalties get out of hand fast, assuming you can overcome the technical problems of either using the rotor as a fixed wing or somehow getting it out of the airstream.

The only real reason for wanting to cancel the V-22 was cost. It was obvious from the start that this new technology needed a huge investment, especially with the current day conceit that with proper management and requirements you can build it right the first time, without the usual pretty much useless couple dozen of "A" models and a bunch of crashes. Post Cold War funds were tight, the military was sizing down, and it really looked like the USMC couldn't afford the V-22. I remember that at one point it was starting to cut into the Poseidon program for R&D dollars!

Of course it's too late to save any of that R&D cost. And those "experts" in journalism, not aerospace engineering, should have asked themselves if ANY major advancement in any type of aircraft has ever occurred without crashes and cost in money and lives.

BTW, the AV-8A problem was pilot training and experience in type. The Marines initially treated it as any other fighter/attack aircraft - it's a lot harder to fly and finally they revised the training requirements accordingly.
 

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Haven't all the AV-8s been retired as far as we are concerned? I think the RAF still has some, though it seems like all the SHARs are gone, with just GR models left. Spanish and Indian navies ahd some, but don't know if they are still flying or not.

Very useful airplane, if a trifle heavy on maintenance and requiring better than average drivers (and lots of training to keep skills sharp). Pity we didn't follow through with the proposed replacement, maybe even the supersonic replacement with the plenum-burning engine. That would have been pretty spectacular.
 

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It's the Harrier all over again. 25% of them were lost in accidents. Down time was so great that no more than 25% of the pilots could stay qualified to fly them. Did nothing of significance in Desert Storm or anywhere else. The Corps doesn't seem to believe in spending much on maintaince: the Brits never had anywhere near the problems the Corps did. Read this weeks Time Mag. The Osprey's problems are still there.
I don't think thats quite true,the Brits used the Harrier to good effect in the Falklands war,that is not insignificant (for the Brits,anyway).Considering it was the first operational fighter of its type,I feel it was actually pretty successful,all things considered.
 

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The AV-8B Harrier is still in service with an upgrade to the "Plus" configuration planned.

"ST. LOUIS, June 08, 2007 -- The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] on June 7 signed a five-year $258.5 million performance-based logistics contract with an option for an additional five years with the U.S. Department of Defense to support AV-8B Harriers operated by the U.S. Marine Corps, Italy and Spain."
 

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Goes to show, I thought I'd seen something suggesting that the Misguided Children had been forced to retire all the Harriers they had left. I think the fact that that ain't so is good news. Useful birds.
 

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When my family And I were vacationing at Emerald Isle NC this past July,We were treated to low flying Harriers over the condo we were staying at every evening.Noisey buggers but
cool.So somebody is still flying them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Gentlemen, Thank you one and all for an interesting debate. I am a professional submariner, nuclear engineering trained starting back in Rickover's day, so I am VERY conservative when it comes to new technology. Not even a matter of analog or digital, I prefer magamps. Keep it stone axe simple if it works. You get the idea. Doesn't mean I won't embrace new technology when it proves reliable. Currently serving on a new construction VIRGINIA class boat and she will do rings around our old boats. ANYTHING on the surface is a target, and anything flying is suspect. Never ment to ruffle feathers, just get a topic going and see where it went. Thank you again.
 

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I don't think thats quite true,the Brits used the Harrier to good effect in the Falklands war,that is not insignificant (for the Brits,anyway).Considering it was the first operational fighter of its type,I feel it was actually pretty successful,all things considered.
I was referring to the Marine Corps experience with Harriers, not the Royal Navy.
 
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