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Assault on Bin Laden: mystery of the downed chopper

seruriermarshal

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Machdiamond

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Well, undoubtedly we are here in the presence of a newly revealed black program.

It looks like a decision was made that the value of the target was deemed important enough to risk exposing it.

It's exciting, when was the last time that a manned black program was revealed? Quite a few years now.
 

xstatic3000

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I'm really at a loss on this one. I wonder if this is some sort of unacknowledged MH-60 development or modification?

I'd love to know Yasotay's thoughts on this.
 

Machdiamond

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My money is on a low observable derivative of the MH-60, but this is an uneducated guess.
 

xstatic3000

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A faceted, radar-stealthy blackhawk derivative has been mentioned on the forum before.
 

JFC Fuller

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An LO development of the UH-60 would certainly make logical sense for this op and would have certainly aided the penetration of Pakistani airspace. The question then of course becomes how much redesign has gone into the aircraft.
 

shaba

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i justb saw a video on msnbc that showed a very similar tail but i cant find anthing on the internet.
 

Deino

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Ohhhh ... it's getting interesting !

I would say if this wasn't a special-modified version - itself most interesting - of a Blackhawk, then most likely something "NEW" (and therefore even more interesting !).

Deino
 

Abraham Gubler

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Here is a sat pic of Osama's Compound after the attack with presumably the wreck of the 'Black Helicopter' in the middle there. If someone can find a scale for the compound (possibly one some media graphic) then we can get a rough sizing of the beastie (via rotor disc). Two things are for certain: it has a four blade rotor and it isn't a Stealth Blimp.
 

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sferrin

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You'd think if it were a "black" design the US would be in control of the area and recovering the aircraft, rather than let it get carted off to China. Pakistan is our "allie" after all.
 

Mr London 24/7

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xstatic3000 said:
A faceted, radar-stealthy blackhawk derivative has been mentioned on the forum before.

Faceted, tricked-out MH-60-a-like seems most likely:

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,2426.msg20379.html#msg20379
 

Abraham Gubler

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Just rotating and lining up the left and right views of that tail rotor assembly with that of an Sikorsky S-70 (H-60) and their structural dimensions look very, very similar. It looks like an after market add on kit for the MH-60 to reduce signatures. Especially in audio. All that excessive streamlining would go a long way to reducing airflow noise. Obviously the highly different tail rotor would be for this objective as well. I also recall CWO Mike Durrant writing about how he worked on special A/MH-60 mods after Somalia in memoriam for CWO Cliff Wolcott (who did a lot of the early DAP work). So I doubt this is deep black Stealth Blimp stuff. Probably classified Secret but reasonably well known in the SOF community.
 

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Abraham Gubler said:
Just rotating and lining up the left and right views of that tail rotor assembly with that of an Sikorsky S-70 (H-60) and their structural dimensions look very, very similar. It looks like an after market add on kit for the MH-60 to reduce signatures. Especially in audio. All that excessive streamlining would go a long way to reducing airflow noise. Obviously the highly different tail rotor would be for this objective as well. I also recall CWO Mike Durrant writing about how he worked on special A/MH-60 mods after Somalia in memoriam for CWO Cliff Wolcott (who did a lot of the early DAP work). So I doubt this is deep black Stealth Blimp stuff. Probably classified Secret but reasonably well known in the SOF community.

I concur it being an H-60 with signature reduction although I doubt that airflow noise reduction was a goal (even with a fenestron the airflow noise would not be detectable) - the "pie plate" over the tail rotor hub, the odd cap on the tail fin, and the silvery paint suggest stealth treatment. It's no secret that the 160th evaluate and operate specially configured helicopters.
 

xstatic3000

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sealordlawrence said:
Well I suppose there is "black" and then there is "black", perhaps this was just "black"? Not "black" enough to worry about?

I didnt see anybody here suggesting stealth blimp, alien derived technology or any other nonsense. ::)

Well of course, almost everything concerning current SOF weapons, training and tactics is classified either Secret or Top Secret, so it shouldnt be surprising that they'd use specialized equipment to go after the world's highest value target and ensure mission success. And with the relatively minor loss of one of their birds, the mission was a resounding success.

Although, I was secretly hoping, for Sublight's sake, that the Seals had in fact floated to the target area astride a black, triangular Stealth Blimp - with bright lights at each corner, of course.
 

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It's really a hoax so we don't realize that they used Nazi anti-gravity flying saucers from the base in Antarctica, where OBL can now share a deep-freeze with Hitler and Jacques de Molay.
 
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xstatic3000 said:
Although, I was secretly hoping, for Sublight's sake, that the Seals had in fact floated to the target area astride a black, triangular Stealth Blimp - with bright lights at each corner, of course.
Oh Steve, turn those scanners down. They are making you hear things.... :)
 

Abraham Gubler

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xstatic3000 said:
Although, I was secretly hoping, for Sublight's sake, that the Seals had in fact floated to the target area astride a black, triangular Stealth Blimp - with bright lights at each corner, of course.

Heah this guy gets it! ;D

Now of course what would they call this MH-60? Ummm... "Stealth Hawk"... or maybe considering the moment of its public debut "Bin Hawken"...
 

fightingirish

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My prediction: "MH-60? Silenthawk" ;)
I agree with Tailspin Turtle, that the pictures so far show IMHO a new version of the MH-60 family for US SOF's.
 

quellish

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xstatic3000 said:
Well of course, almost everything concerning current SOF weapons, training and tactics is classified either Secret or Top Secret, so it shouldnt be surprising that they'd use specialized equipment to go after the world's highest value target and ensure mission success. And with the relatively minor loss of one of their birds, the mission was a resounding success.

This is because open discussion of some of these things could compromise ongoing operations, and put people in harm's way.

CIA not only had the "Quiet One" Hughes 500s in the 60s, but also had modified UH-1s with small diameter, high blade count rotors that were very quiet. From what I recall this could be be added to a standard Huey as a kit. The rotors ran at unusually high RPM and severely compromised performance.

Significantly reducing the radar signature of a rotorcraft has historically been extremely difficult. Spinny parts make great reflectors. Since the 70s there have been a number of efforts to reduce the RCS of rotorcraft.
 
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Whatever they call it, I think they'd better spill it quick. Once the 9/11 "truthers" get a hold of it, you know they are going to call the whole op fake... :(
 

Mat Parry

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xstatic3000 said:
sealordlawrence said:
Well I suppose there is "black" and then there is "black", perhaps this was just "black"? Not "black" enough to worry about?

I didnt see anybody here suggesting stealth blimp, alien derived technology or any other nonsense. ::)

Well of course, almost everything concerning current SOF weapons, training and tactics is classified either Secret or Top Secret

Well.... it would seem to be black enough to get us all talking ;D, until we know any better this would appear to be this birds unintended unveiling I wonder how long this has been sneaking about. It can't be easy for SOAR to conceal training missions with SF troops using this bird (I suppose if it is just an MH-60 with a body kit, then from the troops perspective they wouldn't have ever had to train with this until it's being used in anger, just use the standard MH-60's)
 

Stargazer2006

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sealordlawrence said:
I didnt see anybody here suggesting stealth blimp, alien derived technology or any other nonsense. ::)

You seem to be missing it somehow...

LowObservable said:
It's really a hoax so we don't realize that they used Nazi anti-gravity flying saucers from the base in Antarctica, where OBL can now share a deep-freeze with Hitler and Jacques de Molay.

sublight said:
Whatever they call it, I think they'd better spill it quick. Once the 9/11 "truthers" get a hold of it, you know they are going to call the whole op fake... :(

You guys are not logical. You keep complaining about certain members or certain behaviors, but when they don't act as you expect you can't help but deliberately provoking them. This is how decent topics get locked in the end.
 

Firefly 2

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Belgian state radio now mentions the embarrassment of the Pakistani military regarding their failure to detect and prevent the incursion of their airspace. Reporters claim the Pakistani blame " advanced countermeasures" for this feat. I'm not familiar with Pakistani air defences, but a stealthified MH60 with an advanced ECM suit would fit just that picture.

On the other hand, Belgian state radio also claims that this operation was conducted using Apaches and Chinooks...
 

fightingirish

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Another humble prediction:
What happened to the prototypes of the VH-71A? Are they still stored away in a Hanger?
Maybe the CIA and/or US SOF's took over the few aircraft and modified them for these kind of operations.
3 engines, good range and speed...!


Edit:
Back to my first prediction "MH-60? Silenthawk"

This humble idea of mine reminds very much of reading one of Tom Clancy's books, where he writes about the development history of the GBU-28 used first in Operation Desert Storm.
 

TomS

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fightingirish said:
Another humble prediction:
What happened to the prototypes of the VH-71A? Are they still stored away in a Hanger?
Maybe the CIA and/or US SOF's took over the few aircraft and modified them for these kind of operations.
3 engines, good range and speed...!


No way. Even if it made sense to try such a conversion (and it really doesn't, since USSOCOM can afford to buy its own aircraft for this sort of mission), the VH-71 was terminated in July of 2009. That would mean only 19 months to design, test, and prove the new aircraft as fully mission capable, and get crews trained to the high standard required. Impossible.
 

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Have you seen the courtyard where these helos are supposed to have landed?? How can you fit two Apaches and two Chinooks in there? Doesn't seem to make much sense...
 

Firefly 2

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Stargazer2006 said:
Have you seen the courtyard where these helos are supposed to have landed?? How can you fit two Apaches and two Chinooks in there? Doesn't seem to make much sense...

Exactly, and I can't find an online source for these claims.
So, why is everybody whistling a different tuna? Or are these all red herrings?
Mind you I'm not yelling " conspiracy!", but I do believe there is a fair amount of disinformation in the air.
 

Machdiamond

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I don't think it is a very good idea to quote the Belgian state radio in this thread. We should stick to reputable sources, or as Coluche said "les milieux autorisés".

Regarding the VH-71A, of course no way. The images of the tail are a huge giveaway with symmetrical moveable horizontal stabilizer.
 
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xstatic3000 said:
Although, I was secretly hoping, for Sublight's sake, that the Seals had in fact floated to the target area astride a black, triangular Stealth Blimp - with bright lights at each corner, of course.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frj2GAVWcf0

Steve, you were saying?????
 

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Stargazer2006 said:
Have you seen the courtyard where these helos are supposed to have landed?? How can you fit two Apaches and two Chinooks in there? Doesn't seem to make much sense...
From what I know the only chopper on the ground was the one that made a hard landing - the others only hovered. -SP
 

Stargazer2006

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XB-70 Guy said:
Stargazer2006 said:
Have you seen the courtyard where these helos are supposed to have landed?? How can you fit two Apaches and two Chinooks in there? Doesn't seem to make much sense...
From what I know the only chopper on the ground was the one that made a hard landing - the others only hovered. -SP

Oh, okay. Additional evidence, if need be, of how unreliable the media can be: French TV news tonight had a 3D animation clearly showing two choppers landing in the courtyard...
 

fightingirish

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So we have to wait for the next US DoD briefing. According to its website, SecDef Robert M. Gates has no public or media events on his schedule today.
 
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http://rotorcraft.arc.nasa.gov/Research/Programs/IRAP/IRAP-UH60.html


I remember seeing this (I love the OY-3) a while back and this discussion brought back thoughts of all the work NASA was doing on the Black Hawk and aiming to reduce both main and tail rototr noise.

Be neat if they got them :)
 

quellish

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Stargazer2006 said:
Oh, okay. Additional evidence, if need be, of how unreliable the media can be: French TV news tonight had a 3D animation clearly showing two choppers landing in the courtyard...

For an assault like this, it would be very typical for the teams to fastrope in. It gets the people in much faster than landing, and the aircraft spend less time vulnerable.
The primary assaulters fastrope or rappel in as close to the target as possible (or put the helo on the roof of the target), with a blocking force securing a perimeter around the target. Transports move in and out as fast as possible while other aircraft provide covering fire. "Blackhawk Down", both the book and film illustrated this well.

The unknown aircraft type could have been an assault transport, an observation platform, or fire support. If it was that close to the target, it was likely a transport.

This is a pretty good example of a fast rope insertion. The transport performs a maneuver to dump airspeed, the cargo inserts, and the transport accelerates again. When well practiced, it's almost like the transport doesn't stop.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MP1h45bJCJ4
 

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Only stealthy low observable helos that IIRC reminds me of 'Stingbat' plastic model Kit by Revell or Hasegawa released in the early 90s with extreme BERP like blades. It been assumed that it was of proposed Bell Helicopter and the then McDonnell Douglas consortium for the LHX program with NOTAR.

I had read a rumour that there had been a fly off demonstrator somewhere around the Nevada desert from Bell/McDH and the Army decided to go for the Comanche design (which hadnt flown till 96 anyhow).
 

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There is some speculation over at the dark lair of our dire enemies, militaryphotos.net ( ;D ), that the bird that went down was actually a custom built close support bird, possibly around the size of the Kiowa. AFAIR, the 160th did have a small number a of a 'stealthy' version of the OH-58 (can't remember the exact designation at the moment) up to around the mid-90's (budget cuts), although that was apparently an infiltration and retrieval platform rather than armed support (no weaponry was normally fitted, IIRC). However, I believe that the general consensus over at our mortal foes is, for the moment, the same as over here, i.e. the crashed bird was a stealthy variant of, or a inflitration optimised design derived from, the Blackhawk.
 

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