Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

F-22 Ground Crew Suffered Hypoxia-Like Symptoms
Defensetech ^ | May 9, 2012 | Defensetech

Posted on 05/11/2012 10:53:04 AM PDT by JerseyanExile

Fresh on the heels of yesterday’s announcement by the Air Force that it thinks the hypoxia-like symptoms suffered by F-22 Raptor pilots may be caused by the jets high-altitude performance, reports are emerging that ground crew are also suffering from similar ailments when they stand near the jet while it’s engines are running. Interesting.

At least five ground maintainers complained of illness between September and December, Air Combat Command spokesman Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis said in an Air Force Times article that hit the newsstands Monday. The maintainers grew sick after breathing in ambient air during ground engine runs, a congressional aide told Air Force Times.

I imagine that the service is looking at the rates of sickness for ground crew of other jets to make sure that the Raptor maintainers are actually suffering from something unique to the stealth jet. If they are, it seems to indicate that the problem is indeed related to contaminates emanating from the plane rather than a lack of oxygen getting to the pilots during flight. Just yesterday, one of the Air Force’s top acquisitions officials, Lt. Gen. Janet Wolfenbarger told Senators that the service suspects that the F-22’s On-Board Oxygen Generating Systems (OBOGS) are either feeding the pilots contaminated air or aren’t giving them enough air to breath. She added that the problem may be related to the extreme altitudes that Raptors routinely execute high-G maneuvers in. Needless to say, this latest news puts an interesting twist on that claim.

Apparently, F-22 ground crew have been issued canisters designed to take air samples whenever they feel the onset of hypoxia.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS: airforce; f22; military; nationaldefense

1 posted on 05/11/2012 10:53:21 AM PDT by JerseyanExile
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Yep the F-22 yet ANOTHER GREAT Lockheed Martin Product, the USAF should have went w/ the F-23:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northrop_YF-23


2 posted on 05/11/2012 11:04:55 AM PDT by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: US Navy Vet
Would be an excellent true replacement for the F-14 and give the Navy their own 5th gen fighter.

Too good to let go to waste.

3 posted on 05/11/2012 11:17:15 AM PDT by GBA (Isaiah 9:11)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

“At least five ground maintainers complained of illness between September and December, Air Combat Command spokesman Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis said in an Air Force Times article that hit the newsstands Monday. The maintainers grew sick after breathing in ambient air during ground engine runs, a congressional aide told Air Force Times.”

Considering the source this sounds incredibly fabricated to me.


4 posted on 05/11/2012 11:27:51 AM PDT by Sequoyah101
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: US Navy Vet
Ah the article is referring to potential an engine issues...so thats not Lockheed ...The AF chose the winning engine to put in the winning airframe so F-23 with same winning engine same problem....and if it is the oxygen system the from the F18 in large part a Northrup product

To be honest I do not see how this could be an engine issue...

But we could have a secret stealth fuel additive that they are not talking about that could be the real issue

In any jet exhaust you would have thing that would compromise stealth...smoke, heat, contrails...the left over exhaust gasses themself...all leave a trail to follow

These are all emission you would want to suppress in a "stealth" aircraft...

And that could be with a fuel additive and that could leave some poisonous exhaust gasses

5 posted on 05/11/2012 11:32:21 AM PDT by tophat9000 (American is Barack Oaken)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: tophat9000

More likely that some of the secret radar absorbing coating material is being heated by the engine and out gassing.

The Hypoxia-Like symptoms are just that - symptoms. They are probably actually suffering some type allergic reaction. It will be interesting to see if rashes are next.


6 posted on 05/11/2012 11:37:18 AM PDT by I cannot think of a name
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Sequoyah101

see what happens when you use Alien Technology LOL


7 posted on 05/11/2012 11:40:25 AM PDT by molson209
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: tophat9000
Or any out gassing from some engine lubricant or hydraulic fluid that had to be reformulated for some reason for this aircraft
8 posted on 05/11/2012 11:40:36 AM PDT by tophat9000 (American is Barack Oaken)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Just make it an open cockpit and limit them to flying below 10K .. and mach 2 ..

These are ‘cutting edge’ craft .. highly technical .. shame to see it go to waste ..


9 posted on 05/11/2012 11:41:43 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: tophat9000

I agree with this. The SR-71 had a cesium additive in its jet fuel to reduce the heat signature of the aircraft. We could be seeing the same situation. Note that Blackbird pilots never got sick since their life support systems were LOx and they flew with zero-G suits.

If this is the same case, the OBOGS should be scrapped on the Raptor. The flight suits should be changed to something very similar to the zero-G, and life support systems should be replaced with the tried and true LOx. Though it is more maintenance to refill these bottles, it is incredibly more efficient than the OBOGS. However, the aircraft’s range may be limited since only so much oxygen can be provided.

If you notice, these issues were arising since the crash near Edwards. The Raptor was already flying in 2005 and no life support problems were ever reported (covered up), rather avionics issues were exposed and corrected promptly.

With the announcement of Increment 3.3 in the future, F-22s will be upgraded to use the JHMCS for off-boresight AIM-9X capabilities. There are further upgrades planned on the Raptor and its electronics suite to further surpass every other aircraft in existence. I sincerely hope that if Lockheed and USAF work at converting Raptors to the old school LOx system, they consider changing the flight suits to something that will make efficient use of a zero-G setup comingled with the advanced avionics & weapon system upgrades.


10 posted on 05/11/2012 11:42:54 AM PDT by InsidiousMongo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: tophat9000

I agree with this. The SR-71 had a cesium additive in its jet fuel to reduce the heat signature of the aircraft. We could be seeing the same situation. Note that Blackbird pilots never got sick since their life support systems were LOx and they flew with zero-G suits.

If this is the same case, the OBOGS should be scrapped on the Raptor. The flight suits should be changed to something very similar to the zero-G, and life support systems should be replaced with the tried and true LOx. Though it is more maintenance to refill these bottles, it is incredibly more efficient than the OBOGS. However, the aircraft’s range may be limited since only so much oxygen can be provided.

If you notice, these issues were arising since the crash near Edwards. The Raptor was already flying in 2005 and no life support problems were ever reported (covered up), rather avionics issues were exposed and corrected promptly.

With the announcement of Increment 3.3 in the future, F-22s will be upgraded to use the JHMCS for off-boresight AIM-9X capabilities. There are further upgrades planned on the Raptor and its electronics suite to further surpass every other aircraft in existence. I sincerely hope that if Lockheed and USAF work at converting Raptors to the old school LOx system, they consider changing the flight suits to something that will make efficient use of a zero-G setup comingled with the advanced avionics & weapon system upgrades.


11 posted on 05/11/2012 11:43:01 AM PDT by InsidiousMongo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: US Navy Vet

It probably would have used the same oxygen generation system.


12 posted on 05/11/2012 11:55:03 AM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: I cannot think of a name

Do people normally pass out from a rash?


13 posted on 05/11/2012 11:56:43 AM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: I cannot think of a name

Not only heating, but the lowered atmospheric pressure at altitude would contribute to outgassing.


14 posted on 05/11/2012 11:58:46 AM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: US Navy Vet

Hear, hear, from another YF-23 fan!!!


15 posted on 05/11/2012 11:58:52 AM PDT by mwilli20 (BO. Making communists proud all over the world.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: mwilli20

I like the YF-23 also. If I had my way, the F-22 would be the fighter and the YF-23 would be the attack aircraft to replace the F-117. Yes the F-35 would still exist though as a multi-role aircraft.

An all stealth Air Force; now that would be awesome and deadly.


16 posted on 05/11/2012 12:06:28 PM PDT by InsidiousMongo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: US Navy Vet

This is better coverage of the topic - and more recent also from “Aviation Week and Space technology”

http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_05_07_2012_p31-454218.xml

Summary - They are now looking for other sources than air contaminants since the filters mentioned in the original poster’s article didn’t have anything glaring show up.


17 posted on 05/11/2012 12:40:10 PM PDT by fremont_steve
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: driftdiver

Handling and Working with the various “stealth” materials has produced a long list of human side effects, including shortness of breath, unconsciousness, rashes, internal problems, etc. etc. etc. If a rash shows up, it’s almost certain that any other problems are also being caused by exposure to stealth materials.


18 posted on 05/11/2012 12:54:18 PM PDT by I cannot think of a name
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Could be that the ground crew is working in a constant 1 G environment. I think we need the Government to step in with some rules to help with this.


19 posted on 05/11/2012 12:59:26 PM PDT by TangoLimaSierra (To the left the truth looks like Right-Wing extremism.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: InsidiousMongo

If true it’s most likely low frequency vibration from the engine/accessories, not out gassing.
BTW.. What is a “ZERO-G Suit”???
I know of G- Suits, but nothing is going to create “Zero G” with a mere garment.


20 posted on 05/11/2012 12:59:39 PM PDT by Robe (Rome did not create a great empire by talking, they did it by killing all those who opposed them)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Robe

Space suits! LOL The thick orange ones the SR-71 pilots used.


21 posted on 05/11/2012 1:13:45 PM PDT by InsidiousMongo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: I cannot think of a name
Im thinking more likely some outgassing that displaces O2 in the human system ...think CO...it binds to your blood hemoglobin in place of and displaces O2...and you right in could be a coting reacting to engine heat...but it would seem to be some chemical emission trigger while the engine is running not some simple systems failer
22 posted on 05/11/2012 1:14:05 PM PDT by tophat9000 (American is Barack Oaken)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: tophat9000

All I know is the stealth stuff is supposedly really nasty. Lockheed had a bunch of employees at Groom Lake sue over it. They weren’t even working with it, but they worked near some pits where a bunch of the stuff had been buried. They had a variety of really strange ailments and illnesses. Lockheed argued they could not possibly been made ill by that stuff since it was buried.

We’ll never know what could have been proved because the government stepped in and made it very clear to Lockheed that none of this business was going to be discussed in open court nor allowed by the discovery process. So Lockheed settled with the workers.


23 posted on 05/11/2012 1:39:07 PM PDT by I cannot think of a name
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Most oxygen generating systems work by separating air into oxygen and nitrogen. The oxygen (20%) goes to where it is needed and the nitrogen (80%) is exhausted as a waste stream. Problems arise when these systems aren’t used correctly. Like the little old lady who buys one because she needs oxygen. She doesn’t like the noise from the compressor, so she puts it in a closet; pretty soon all the oxygen is gone from the closet and she’s getting mostly nitrogen.
I wonder if these ground crew people are breathing in the 80% waste nitrogen exhaust.


24 posted on 05/11/2012 1:40:49 PM PDT by BuffaloJack (End Obama's War On Freedom.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

I thought the F-22s were going to be hangar queens, but I’d figured it was because no one would be willing to risk losing a piece of hardware that expensive, not because they’d have things seriously wrong with them.


25 posted on 05/11/2012 3:31:35 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: InsidiousMongo

“Blackbird pilots never got sick since their life support systems were LOx and they flew with zero-G suits.” The high-altitude suits were partial pressure suits, thus requiring a rubber diaphragm around the wearer’s face. I believe they were on O2 long before they left those little vans. So no chance of breathing any aircraft exhaust. We had 6 Habu’s at KAB, when I was stationed on the Rock, 73-75.


26 posted on 05/12/2012 3:51:05 AM PDT by Colorado Cowgirl (God bless America!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson