Radschool Association Magazine - Vol 24
Dick Harcourt sent us this. This is a photo of the Global Hawk UAV that returned from the war zone recently under its own power (Iraq to Edwards AFB) - not transported via C5 or C17. Notice the mission paintings on the fuselage, this aircraft has completed over 250 missions - that's a lot of flying for a remotely-piloted aircraft.
Think of the technology and the quality of the data link required to fly it remotely over such distances. And while it was flying high over Iraq, delivering intel data back to the USAF, the pilot controlled it from a nice warm control panel at Edwards AFB.
It has really long legs, with a range of 22,200 km, and it can stay up for almost 2 days at altitudes above 60,000ft. This particular Global Hawk was controlled via satellite; it flew missions during operational test and evaluation that went from Edwards AFB to upper Alaska and back non-stop.
It’s not a baby, being 13.4 metres long, 35.3 metres wide and 4.6 metres high. As a comparison, the Beechcraft Super King Air, Flying Doctor aircraft, (right) is 13.3 metres long, 16.5 metres wide and 4.5 metres high.
The technique is for them to come into a fight at a high mach number in military thrust, fire their AMRAAMS, or take their photos and no one ever sees them or paints them with radar.
There is practically no radio chatter because all the aircraft in the flight are tied together electronically and can see who is targeting who. They have AWACS direct input and 3600 situational awareness from that and other sensors. These aircraft are to air superiority what the jet engine was to aviation.
It can taxi, take off, fly a mission, return, land and taxi all on its own. No blackouts, no fatigue, no relief tubes, no ejection seats, and best of all, no POWs or dead pilots.
In Vol 23, we had a photo of what looked like a civvy Sikorsky chopper, with RAAF markings on it and asked if anyone knew anything about it.
Nick Savino saw the photo and he says, “It is VH-HRP, a Sikorsky S76, operated by CHC Helicopters. (CHC used to be Lloyd Helicopters)
The aircraft is on contract to the RAAF for Search and Rescue at East Sale, Pearce, Willytown and Tindal. Nick says he worked on the first couple in 1993 when they were imported into Australia from Jordan. He says we did a fairly big Avionics update which had us use 2 techs from Sikorsky. We also did an engine change from the Alison 250 to an Arriels engine plus several other mods.
All mods were carried out in Adelaide in a warehouse near the entertainment area which meant trucking them in and out. In fact our newly modified first S76 had a wire strike on its maiden voyage on the back of the truck when VHF 1 upper antenna hit a wire. Result new antenna written off!
We carried out test flights for all the new radio installs including ADF swings and VOR tests etc. The machine can Auto Hover.
Ken Hodge saw it too and he writes:
In reply to the query on page 10 of the RAM, Vol 23. I have attached another photo of a Sikorsky S76 at the Red Bull Air Race in Perth November 2006. I had assumed it was there as a general rescue helicopter but from the 2004 CHC press release below it would have been present because RAAF aircraft were taking part in the flying display. Another fine example of government outsourcing.
CHC Renews Contract with Royal Australian Air Force for $134 Million
“CHC Helicopter Corporation ("CHC") today announced that its operating division, CHC Australia, has been successful in renewing its contract with the Commonwealth Government of Australia to provide Search and Rescue (“SAR”) helicopters and crews for the Royal Australian Air Force ("RAAF") for a period of 10 years, plus two option periods of two years each.
The new contract, which commences July 1, 2004, will generate anticipated revenues of approximately $134 million over the initial 10-year period.
Under the terms of the contract, CHC will provide a core of five specially equipped Sikorsky S76A auto-hover capable helicopters at four RAAF bases across Australia. CHC will provide additional support to RAAF fighter squadron deployments to remote bases in Australia, using Bell 412, Bell 212 and S76 aircraft from the CHC fleet. CHC has provided sophisticated helicopter Search and Rescue support to the Royal Australian Air Force for more than 10 years.”
Do you realize that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we're kids? If you're less than 10 years old, you're so excited about aging that you think in fractions.
'How old are you?' 'I'm four and a half!' You're never thirty-six and a half. You're four and a half, going on five! That's the key.
You get into your teens, now they can't hold you back. You jump to the next number, or even a few ahead.
'How old are you?' 'I'm gonna be 16!' You could be 13, but hey, you're gonna be 16! And then the greatest day of your life . You become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony . YOU BECOME 21 - YESSSS!!!
But then you turn 30. Oooohh, what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk! He TURNED; we had to throw him out. There's no fun now, you're just a sour-dumpling. What's wrong? What's changed?
You BECOME 21, you TURN 30, then you're PUSHING 40. Whoa! Put on the brakes, it's all slipping away. Before you know it, you REACH 50 and your dreams are gone.
But wait!!! You MAKE it to 60. You didn't think you would!
So you BECOME 21, TURN 30, PUSH 40, REACH 50 and MAKE it to 60.
You've built up so much speed that you HIT 70! After that it's a day-by-day thing; you HIT Wednesday!
You get into your 80's and every day is a complete cycle; you HIT lunch; you TURN 4:30 ; you REACH bedtime. And it doesn't end there. Into the 90s, you start going backwards; 'I Was JUST 92.'
Then a strange thing happens. If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again. 'I'm 100 and a half!'
May you all make it to a healthy 100 and a half!!