Skip to comments.USAF vows to discover root cause of Raptor's maladies
Posted on 03/31/2012 2:47:00 PM PDT by U-238
A US Air Force Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) panel investigating a series of hypoxia-like incidents afflicting pilots flying the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor has not discovered what is causing the problem, but service officials vow they will find the root cause.
"I am convinced there is a root cause," says Maj Gen Charles Lyon, Air Combat Command's (ACC) director of operations. "I want everyone to know--particularly those who operate it and their families--we will not rest until we find that root cause."
The USAF is continuing to test the F-22's life-support systems to try to determine what is still causing these "physiological incidents."
Those efforts started in September 2011 under the auspices of ACC, says retired Gen Greg "Speedy" Martin, who led the SAB study. "Those are ongoing today," he says.
The most recent of these physiological incidents happened on 26 March where a pilot at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in Virginia had to declare an emergency after his pulse-oximeter alerted him that there might be a problem. The small device is part of the new ensemble of safety gear F-22 pilots are now required to fly with to mitigate the potential risk from life-support system anomalies.
(Excerpt) Read more at flightglobal.com ...
Maladies in our defense equipment should be kept classified. Oh that’s right, 0bama is President and our goal is to project a ‘weak military’.. There’s obviously an odd physics phenomenon or a tiny part at fault but we should project strength not weaknesses in our military!
I would be more inclined to see difficulties and dismiss if the problematic system was new cutting edge stuff. But come on guys, this is the oxygen system for the pilot!!!!!! How many years have we made O2 systems for aircraft crew???
1. computers have glitches and their might not be a problem.
2. the New recording device or probe might be the problem.
3. Houston we have a malfunction. Its all in your heads!
This one of those ‘Facepalm’ problems. It is simple. But they just aren’t ‘seeing it’. Probably a manufacturing error, like a part turned backwards or something simple. Just not obvious right now.
In reality the oxygen system is quite sophisticated. It requires energy and air from the engine bleed to eventually be converted to oxygen. There are no oxygen tanks for the primary ventilation system. It is the complexity of this system, especially in cold weather, that is believed to be the source of hypoxia and a strong candidate as the primary cause of the one Raptor crash to date.
The OBOGS technology was first introduced in combat aircraft in the late 1970s and early 1980s, replacing a requirement to store liquid oxygen tanks in aircraft.
That is one of my theories.
They always come up with new spiffy stuff that does not work.
I understand with the electronics, but when it is the AC or O2, why they do not keep the old stuff, I wonder. THis is a glimpse of how the government would keep “climate change” tuned up for us.
Let’s see, 1980 to 2012 is 32 years. Now how long did it take us to go the the moon and we started from ground zero?
It is entirely unacceptable to have to walk up to the new widows house and say her husband died because our aircraft manufacturer was too stupid to make an oxygen system that functions properly.
These defense contractors make entirely enough money to provide equipment that works.
With new, different engines come new, different air bleeding systems and new, different computer and control systems. With not nearly as well-established known failure/replacement rates.
I mean, one of the most modern passenger jets out there flown by Air France was lost in part because of frozen pitot tubes (airspeed measurement) - the other part being crew not trained properly to handle such an event correctly). These tubes been around a LOOOOONG time.
Not buying it. Sure hope Martin-Baker has better luck.
At ground level humans breathe air with a 21% oxygen concentration in order to oxygenate the bloodstream and, hence, sustain life. The pressure exerted by the oxygen component of air is termed the Partial Pressure of Oxygen (PPO2). It becomes progressively more difficult for humans to take in oxygen as PPO2 decreases in direct proportion to air pressure with increasing altitude. At higher altitudes this will lead to insufficient oxygen being present in the bloodstream, a condition known as hypoxia, and eventually death. The OBOGS is controlled by a solid state monitor/controller that monitors the PPO2 level of the OBOGS product gas, and adjusts the cycling of the beds to produce the desired level of oxygen concentration. To prevent hypoxia in military aircrew it is necessary, as a rule of thumb, to maintain the minimum of PPO2 to the equivalent of altitudes in the range 8,000 feet to 10,000 feet in order to perform normal levels of work."
My understanding is that the Navy has experienced similar issues with the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, though not on as great a scale and the two services are working together to tackle this problem.
And what do they use for the "plan B" redundant/back-up system for the pilot?
I have to agree with Secret Agent Man