It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

B-52 engine saga takes an interesting twist

page: 1
2

log in

join
share:

posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 08:43 PM
link   
So for years the Air Force has been looking at possible engine replacements for the B-52. The original plan, to use four CF6 engines would have caused airframe damage, and reduced the lifespan of the aircraft. GE has been pushing to do a one to one swap, with similar sized and rated engines. Well now, Pratt&Whitney has thrown a curve into the whole saga.

In 2014, the Air Force released an RFI calling for 10-25% fuel savings, and 15-25 years before the first scheduled depot overhaul. Last July they said they are considering purchasing 650 engines, which seems to indicate a one to one swap and continuing with 8 engines per airframe. Any replacement however, will require new nacelles and quite a bit of windtunnel, and flight testing before it can be introduced into the fleet.

Which is where the curve comes in. Pratt&Whitney is looking at a major upgrade/redesign of the TF33 engine that is already in use on the aircraft. They would improve fuel performance, while reducing maintenance costs, with no redesign of the nacelle required. They haven't said what they plan to do, but they're having to go back to the old paper drawings of the engine, because it's so old nothing is on computer. This could also potentially help the E-3 program as well, which also uses the TF33 engines.


Pratt & Whitney remains confident that a TF33 upgrade package it is developing would keep the fuel-guzzling Boeing B-52 bomber, an eight-engine goliath, flying into 2040 and beyond.

The aircraft was introduced in 1952 and the later H-model that remains in service today is still powered by the original P&W TF33, which celebrated its 55th anniversary of first flight in March.

P&W military engines president Bennett Croswell told Flightglobal last year that some four-engine options had been considered by the US Air Force as part of a potential re-engining programme, but the effort was abandoned. Oil prices have also dropped considerably since then.

www.flightglobal.com...




posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 09:02 PM
link   
If things get too bad we can redesign some stuff in the bone yards. Germany is going to be flying A-4Ns for an aggressor group.
Maybe the F16XLs will get a shot.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 09:14 PM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58

Other than for posturing, is the B-52 still even a viable aircraft in war time?



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 09:34 PM
link   
a reply to: Vector99

Yes. It's extremely useful to use as a missile truck, as well as a CAS platform.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 09:45 PM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58

So it's more a passive support craft now I take it? I'm curious because honestly I've always wondered how it would be used in a war against another superpower. Nowadays the thing is a big slow target with modern air defense. Support craft makes perfect sense. Thanks for the answer



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 09:52 PM
link   

originally posted by: Vector99
a reply to: Zaphod58

Other than for posturing, is the B-52 still even a viable aircraft in war time?

Yah, it carpet bombs real good.

Designed to nuke the Soviets in a long gone by era, its obsoletism was first thwarted by Vietnam. Good at reducing mile long swaths of jungle.
The jungle warmongers wet dream.

Later it was employed to drop strings of bombs on troop trenches in Iraq, peppered some mountains in Afghanistan and even did some runs in Kosovo, I think.

Hard to justify nowadays unless you need tons and tons of ordnance dropped in long sticks.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 10:07 PM
link   
a reply to: intrptr

Yea I guess it's good for the middle east, but I think if the US flew all 90 or so active B52's at Russia or China we would have reports of 90 or so B52's being shot down. Just such an old, slow, un-stealthy aircraft. Both times we went to Iraq we led with stealth bombers because Saddam's air defences would have shot down the flying fortresses. Still an amazing plane though, especially its evolution.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 10:10 PM
link   
a reply to: Vector99

And they'd be led by stealth aircraft again if they went towards Russia or China. So would the B-1s, or any other aircraft. That's the entire point of stealth aircraft.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 10:16 PM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58

But would the B-52's actually perform bombing runs? I don't think we could ever guarantee complete destruction of air defences in a war with another superpower, heck we couldn't even do that right away in Iraq. Granted yes I know, they were a super-power in a sense at the time, but not on the likes of China, Russia, India or any of our allies.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 11:31 PM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58

I forget. Is there a turret on the B52?

One of my counseling bosses used to ride in that part of it, IIRC.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 11:39 PM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58
I say dump all of the engines and pylons, put a Trent XWB in an over-wing pod, and call it a single engine platform bomber...




posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 01:15 AM
link   
a reply to: Vector99

It would depend on the target. They would probably bomb some minor targets but mostly would launch missiles.



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 01:17 AM
link   
a reply to: BO XIAN

They removed the guns on them. Up through the F model the gunner rode in the turret. The G and H they rode in the cockpit until they pulled the guns.



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 10:34 AM
link   
a reply to: Zaphod58

im drawing a blank on the contractor making them

(excuse the small explanation)

it looks like a LRASM but is a jammer and decoy i forget there name

but i would assume a B-52 could fire ALLOT of them in to contested airspace, depleting a vast majority of AA and tying up radar station for the real strike air craft to hit them, hard.



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 10:47 AM
link   
a reply to: penroc3

LRASM is a new antiship missile, but it can carry those too, in fairly large numbers (12 just on external racks). You're thinking of JASSM and MALD-J though. Yeah, they can carry quite a few of both.



new topics

top topics



 
2

log in

join