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The Need for a Small Tactical Airlifter

Blackadder1916

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And over forty years ago, one of our early Chinooks.


B41s-1P0dJrr22RCfjByImtEHI_OF32B1FfOMWvW-K_3BonrV1i-lR1G6I-0tTryPh-XKgHMKELw76PiU4NYrpR3HM3u2GR5Hv3KsTdEKxx91psoYpBuOjdvmoPQqGFlXIx_w0HPmjxe9xvN4Y5ncIjdg4F-L_xLa4Va2sMY9jEUsQfuPqAd17lDwmGb1HN3xV4X58Fkc0tWhVQfNNMpZicBfb4x2zOt_FIHI871a7CnDGuq-JOhYdfsKrfkZpVQRhxTC6YIVvgl2IyUVo3b8UkDZ3j3CgjkWE48ZBZXP7qucQ5r-uKltlFMs00JSklRK6pONDMgK8bYkcEAG7X-Ekfc1rA85LFegRcTZ4EuoRyJiwP28ogxwvFHOTh2jhJ0BaL9ZnAP6Gh_59ALhPapOdfYi8YozgmqRoeDNd7KOBDUs1wQZ0-LUYrtf9fT2jMH-LZ9pZSBFVov8LnXBVsehBewBlGXJkD1CRr6nbQBcsqCvKOAbOo5dPmyCtqGBOniSbtEIaMqDldNX4bNliqnPkDRsmoC66pZmKAEgCTYmVLg0SIHY4jgj9FKnswTWAoAwRzDzkHBHPyeVrbfw_v9LCBtIhZ0bqkjBWkYw1vu4NcRwbIokeCHOfI_UZnDE6ISa9HsmKX3XymZqZZCQSbhBiElIOLI2p0=w923-h673-no
 

suffolkowner

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Below the old CASR take on the Twin Otter.

https://defencemuse.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/twin-otters-for-twin-otters-buying-new-makes-financial-sense-so-does-adding-similar-guardian-400-surveillance-aircraft-to-the-mix/


https://defencemuse.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/twin-option-for-the-twin-otters-simple-solutions-are-often-the-best/

With regards to the Chinook's I believe I read on CASR as well that they were sacrificed in favor of mothballing Huey's??? The new Bell tilt rotors and SB-Defiant sure look interesting/promising going forward
 

Good2Golf

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suffolkowner said:
With regards to the Chinook's I believe I read on CASR as well that they were sacrificed in favor of mothballing Huey's???

CSAR was wrong.  The Twin Huey’s flew until 1997.

The decision to kill the Chinooks was made in 1990 by the Army, or more accurately, then FMC (Force Mobile Command).  FMC at that point was responsible for funding land aviation, not Air Command, and FMC chose not to spend the $400M required to rebuild the seven remaining C-model Chinooks to D-model configuration.

Fortunately 17 years later, Chinooks were brought back albeit in the form of ‘well-seasoned’ D-models approaching the end of their useful life, then a few years later in a state-of-the-art version that is the envy of many.

Regards
G2G
 

GK .Dundas

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Good2Golf said:
CSAR was wrong.  The Twin Huey’s flew until 1997.

The decision to kill the Chinooks was made in 1990 by the Army, or more accurately, then FMC (Force Mobile Command).  FMC at that point was responsible for funding land aviation, not Air Command, and FMC chose not to spend the $400M required to rebuild the seven remaining C-model Chinooks to D-model configuration.

Fortunately 17 years later, Chinooks were brought back albeit in the form of ‘well-seasoned’ D-models approaching the end of their useful life, then a few years later in a state-of-the-art version that is the envy of many. I

Regards
G2G
Quite frankly the only thing wrong with the Chinook,is that there are not enough of them.
 

a_majoor

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As far as self protection and other issues are concerned, the Cessna 208B Caravan is in operational use by several air forces, and can be adapted to carry weapons like the Hellfire missile. Unarmed the Caravan is also a pretty heavy duty load hauler and can be considered a 21rst century version of the Twin Otter (including the ability to fit floats and skis if required).

Of course most of these air forces use the Caravans as utility transports and the occasional support aircraft in low intensity conflicts. A deployment like Mali would be the closest equivalent for us.

 

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Loachman

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It still adds nothing useful. Our prime role is medevac. Few casualties occur near usable and defendable/clearable airfields, and there are precious few of those anyway. Helicopters are still the best option, by far - the only option, in fact.
 

BurmaShave

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Thucydides said:
As far as self protection and other issues are concerned, the Cessna 208B Caravan is in operational use by several air forces, and can be adapted to carry weapons like the Hellfire missile. Unarmed the Caravan is also a pretty heavy duty load hauler and can be considered a 21rst century version of the Twin Otter (including the ability to fit floats and skis if required).

Of course most of these air forces use the Caravans as utility transports and the occasional support aircraft in low intensity conflicts. A deployment like Mali would be the closest equivalent for us.

Caravan, Twotter, An-2...none of those matter in a world where the Chinook exists. Yeah, they're "short takeoff and landing". Still need at least a quarter mile. The Chinook needs a dirt patch. Five times the payload capacity. Same cruise speed.

Light transports can have better range. Good for up north (Two Otter) or SAR. More importantly:

Light transports are cheaper. Cheaper to operate, cheaper to buy, cheaper to maintain. Good for civilian bush pilot stuff. Good if you're poor. We, for all our issues, are not poor.
 

Loachman

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BurmaShave said:
Still need at least a quarter mile IED- and insurgent-free.

Runways, even primitive ones, are obvious.

That small clearing behind those trees, this open patch here, that one over there, and the one behind it, and that spot just to the left, and, and, and, and ... not so much.
 

Kirkhill

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Burma 1944 Medevac of Chindits from White City - The entire field cleared by hand (with explosive assistance) in order to get a pilot and a stretcher in and out.

whitecity31.jpg


Coincidentally, also in Burma in 1944

air-commando4.jpg


https://chindits.wordpress.com/2016/06/26/return-of-the-chindits-part-2/
 

Good2Golf

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Chris Pook said:
Burma 1944 Medevac of Chindits from White City - The entire field cleared by hand (with explosive assistance) in order to get a pilot and a stretcher in and out.

whitecity31.jpg

Worst case, a ‘Hook wouldn’t even need a STANAG-compliantly sized cleared pad at all, and could hover rock still for hours to load injured onto the ramp hovering 3-5’ directly about a narrow cleared route. 

As Burma Shave said, for all our issues, we’re not a force that needs cheap, operationally narrowly-employable crack-fillers where we have invested in capabilities that were invested in to provide breadth of service.  A Grand Caravan can’t mount a couple of M134Ds to ‘address LZ surprises,” etc.

Regards
G2G
 

Colin Parkinson

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Good2Golf said:
Worst case, a ‘Hook wouldn’t even need a STANAG-compliantly sized cleared pad at all, and could hover rock still for hours to load injured onto the ramp hovering 3-5’ directly about a narrow cleared route. 

As Burma Shave said, for all our issues, we’re not a force that needs cheap, operationally narrowly-employable crack-fillers where we have invested in capabilities that were invested in to provide breadth of service.  A Grand Caravan can’t mount a couple of M134Ds to ‘address LZ surprises,” etc.

Regards
G2G

Does the twin rotor have an issue with the vortex ring state?
 

Loachman

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One has to either deliberately or very stupidly cause that to happen.

I know of only one case in the CF, many years ago - a Sea King at an air show in the US.

A couple of us tried in a Jet Ranger in Portage once, with lots of recovery altitude, and couldn't make it happen.
 

Good2Golf

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Colin P said:
Does the twin rotor have an issue with the vortex ring state?

Abused/improperly operated, any helicopter can be placed into vortex ring state, however, a Chinook has three factors in its favour for generally avoiding VRS: 1) relatively lower rotor-disc loading (eg. 8.5 lbs/sqft CH-147F vs 11.5 lbs/sqft for the CH-149 Cormorant) so it tends not to force induced flow into a recirculating condition leading to VRS; 2) high available power, which can serve to break the recirculation of rotor induced flow (not a recommended recovery technique); and 3) a non-circular overall rotor shape, which tends to also make recirculation of induced flow easier to stop once formed.  One would have to fly a Chinook rather badly to induce VRS, and the recovery technique (simple side-slip, or a pedal-turn to swing sideways) if rather effective to recover with minimal altitude loss.

Regards,
G2G
 

SeaKingTacco

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Loachman said:
One has to either deliberately or very stupidly cause that to happen.

I know of only one case in the CF, many years ago - a Sea King at an air show in the US.

A couple of us tried in a Jet Ranger in Portage once, with lots of recovery altitude, and couldn't make it happen.

It happened again to a Sea King during a simulated freestream south of Victoria in 2015. The copilot (a student) mismanaged the evolution and the instructor pilot let it get too far so he could not recover in time. They impacted the water, did an integrity check then lifted off and returned to CYYJ. They were lucky- the aircraft suffered almost no damage.
 

Loachman

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Okay - so there are now two cases of which I am aware, both involving Sea Kings. Is that simply a coincidence, or is was there something about the Sea King that made it more prone?
 

Blackadder1916

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To swing back to the premise of the article quoted and linked in the OP, the author was primarily discussing Air Force "distributed operations" and the utility of smaller aircraft and expedient airfields.
Taking Distributed Ops Seriously

This article isn’t intended to substitute a detailed analysis done by air logistics professionals. If NATO is going to consider distributed operations in Europe, we need to consider them seriously. That means we need a more detailed look at the logistics requirements of distributed operations and the ability of current airlifters to service them in a difficult environment. Logisticians cannot rely on long-haul ground transport for timely movement of crews and weapons – it’s bad enough that NATO will likely have to rely on ground transport for fueling a very thirsty fighter force. The Russians are aware of this and can be expected to make ground transportation as difficult as possible. We have a case study that shows how to air supply dispersed locations – the story of Vietnam is one of shifting bases, changing requirements, and use of distributed forces. In Vietnam, the enemy was often foliage, water, and terrain, but was a difficult and unforgiving adversary for all of that.

Air transport is only as viable as the aircraft that fly the routes and the airfields that make up the network. Europe has the airfields to sustain a robust air effort, right up to the point where Russian missiles start hitting them. After that point, the kind of aircraft we have matter a lot more if they can fly into short, damaged, or makeshift airfields. The Russians simply cannot deliver the weight of precision ordnance necessary to prevent Twin Otter operations across the theater – there aren’t that many missiles in their inventory. Given the huge cost disparity between the C-130 and the Twin Otter, it would seem that a relatively paltry investment in new small airlift aircraft could pay big dividends. It also offsets requirements for redundant personnel and equipment by reducing what we have to send forward in the initial dispersal by providing a more dynamic re-supply capability that can adjust for local conditions and operational requirements. Just having this kind of aircraft in the inventory will greatly complicate the targeting picture for Russian forces and add to the weight of NATO’s deterrent.

I came across this "example" of exercising such in Europe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_cxkF6qSY8

The airlift specific stuff starts around the 1:00 mark and at the 3:49 mark there is a quick Canadian connection.
 

Good2Golf

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Especially convenient for ‘most of NATO’ where intra-AO travel occurs over distances notably smaller than in Canada.
 
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