USMC KC-130J/F-35B midair near KNJK

Nark

Macho Superpilot
So much for "battled hardened" airframes.
It's not just about the engines able to accept an X amount of FOD. Self sealing fuel tanks, EMP protection, and other mechanical/backup redundancies are a factor. I can't speak specifically to the F-35, but other airframes have a lot of not-to-sexy things on them that make them survivable in combat.

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The AF security Forces are, ummm not special... so much dumb walking around during this dog and pony show.
 

BobDDuck

Island Bus Driver
It's not just about the engines able to accept an X amount of FOD. Self sealing fuel tanks, EMP protection, and other mechanical/backup redundancies are a factor. I can't speak specifically to the F-35, but other airframes have a lot of not-to-sexy things on them that make them survivable in combat.
For sure. My point was more about how a lot of those items don't make it to the production model for reasons like "cost" and "weight". The F35 was particularly hard hit on the weight side because of the design requirements on the Marine side of the JSF spec sheet.

I was a very (very) small part of the early Osprey program and it was interesting to compare the early specs and design of a pretty much self sufficient battle wagon, with the production version vegetarian, thin walled bus.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
If you mean the pilot talking on the radio, oh man, I'd be s***ting myself too. Who knows if that wing is gonna hold until you can get it on deck. I don't mean this in a crass way, but (K)C-130's haven't exactly had the greatest track record of not disintegrating in flight in the last few years. Like you said, great that they got to go home......so many tiny variables could have changed to make that not the case. Also I'm sure a pretty strong dose of solid flying and aviatorship. Someone pointed out the decision making that seems to have led them to choose to pass up the paved field a few miles away for an immediate landing. That's pretty solid judgement IMHO if true, even if they are used to landing in the dirt.
For what it appears he was suddenly dealing with, I'd say he was remarkably calm and articulate on the radio. Probably a Marine thing: in normal life they often act crazy... throw 'em into a shirt-show and they act normal.
 

Flyinthrew

Well-Known Member
Marine KC130Js have a couple of parachutes hanging on the forward bulkhead in the cargo area. I don’t think much thought is given to their use.

The aviator in the jet is a highly capable, solid pilot.

I don’t know what the investigation will reveal, but let this be a lesson to us all:

In the blink of an eye, ANY one of us can go from ‘SOLID PILOT’ to ‘OVERCONFIDENT SENIOR AVIATOR’ who neglects critical tasks if we’re not careful.


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USMCmech

Well-Known Member
The aviator in the jet is a highly capable, solid pilot.

....

In the blink of an eye, ANY one of us can go from ‘SOLID PILOT’ to ‘OVERCONFIDENT SENIOR AVIATOR’ who neglects critical tasks if we’re not careful.
One common theme of accident reports is that there are two general types. Inexperienced pilots who get in over their head, or seasoned pros who get in trouble on a routine flight.

None of us is immune.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Is that damage most likely from the hose snapping forward and hitting the props, or did the F35 somehow get up underneath the wing? I'm guessing the latter, as they took enough damage to warrant bailing out.
Good question, I've been contemplating the same question. I really can't understand how the 130's props -above the tanker fuselage and forward of where a receiving aircraft would be ((or could be??)) - could possibly be damaged in such fashion by a refueling aircraft.

I would tend to argue the hose, not aircraft, explanation. But WTF knows... I mean, even if the $150MM uber-controllable 35 snuck up under the wing, it seems that at worst it could only impact ONE side of the 130... In this case it looks that it might have affected two sides of the 130. Doesn't seem clear, at least in an obvious fashion.
 
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MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Good question, I've been contemplating the same question. I really can't understand how the 130's props -above the tanker fuselage and forward of where a receiving aircraft would be ((or could be??)) - could possibly be damaged in such fashion by a refueling aircraft.

I would tend to argue the hose, not aircraft, explanation. But WTF knows... I mean, even if the $150MM uber-controllable 35 snuck up under the wing, it seems that at worst it could only impact ONE side of the 130... In this case it looks that it might have affected two sides of the 130. Doesn't seem clear, at least in an obvious fashion.
the problem with the hose by itself causing damage, is it is trailing behind the 130; there’s nothing that can force the hose forward of the wing by itself to contact the props, unless a receiver connected to the hose goes so far forward as to physically bring the hose underneath, or even possibly over, the wing and into the props. If that is what occurred, then how that would even remotely happen, is the $64K question. Assuming that’s the case, the -130 is a mere stable, non-maneuvering platform; would be difficult to see where it would be causal. But who knows at this point.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
sure the hoses are, well, hose, but I’m guessing the fuel nozzle is a pretty hefty chunk of metal?
it is. But the question is what contacted the props? The hose, the F-35, the small basket nozzle, something else unrelated to the aforementioned, or a combo platter of the above?
 

NovemberEcho

Dergs favorite member
the problem with the hose by itself causing damage, is it is trailing behind the 130; there’s nothing that can force the hose forward of the wing by itself to contact the props, unless a receiver connected to the hose goes so far forward as to physically bring the hose underneath, or even possibly over, the wing and into the props. If that is what occurred, then how that would even remotely happen, is the $64K question. Assuming that’s the case, the -130 is a mere stable, non-maneuvering platform; would be difficult to see where it would be causal. But who knows at this point.
now I have no idea the materials a refueling hose is made of, but ask anyone who has ever used a tow strap, if that thing has stress on it and it snaps it going flying forward. No different than when you shoot a rubber band with your finger. I’d assume the hose has some flex/stretch built into it.
 

Lawman

Well-Known Member
now I have no idea the materials a refueling hose is made of, but ask anyone who has ever used a tow strap, if that thing has stress on it and it snaps it going flying forward. No different than when you shoot a rubber band with your finger. I’d assume the hose has some flex/stretch built into it.
The reel response on the hoses is actually a hydraulically manipulated assembly and it’s balanced/calibrated to be neutral in drag based off the type of basket/coupler being flown. The idea would be hydraulic charging to allow the hose to move back and forth will less than 100lbs of force as that’s what it takes to seat the coupler.

The disconnect procedure actually deliberate exceeds that breaking force after it pulls the hose out to its set limit. And the basket if properly aligned to your receiver position just sorta hangs in space for a couple seconds, and then floats back where it should be. There have been instances where parts of or the whole damn the basket come off with it, but it’s never been so much catastrophic as a moment of mission ending and the receiver going “oh crap now what am I gonna do with this thing”

Loss of the end of the hose will lead to a loss of that balance, it wouldn’t be a violent snap, more like a tape measure retracting. And it has a breaking capability to stop it, or even jettison it out (which is why you don’t fly in the astern when they are resetting or manipulating the reel). It is possible to have, and even refuel from a “dead hose.” But that’s not permissible in training. And it would be dumb as hell if the tanker has a functional hose on the other wing.

A hose just failing somehow in the middle typically requires a rotor system....


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Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
I still remember the ‘Air Force One’ refueling midair disaster. That poor tanker!

Gary Oldman nailed his role. And who can forget the iconic phrase by Ford, “Get off my plane!”
 
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