F-22s may have been lost as a result of Hurricane Michael

kitnut617

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Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Idiotic!!!
Billions lost because they couldn't be loaded on a flatbed and trucked out of state??

Someone's ass should be fired. They knew perfectly well how serious the storm was.

Should have been trucked out of the area
An F-22 is 13 meters wide and 5 meters high. Moving something that big is a major operation that needs far more than 2 days of preparation: many roads don't have more than 5 meters clearance across and ~4.5 m in height.
Disassembling the aircraft to a road-transportable state could also easily take more than 2 days.
I've seen an entire house moved on interstate highways on more than a few occasions with the very large flatbeds and a few white trucks with yellow hazard lights.
yes, with 3 months of planning to find a clear route and prepare the places where a clear route can't be found (by temporarily removing traffic lights, signs and other obstructions).
Actually, there are routes already built that way so large loads can be moved around. Things like traffic light poles that can be turned and as in the video, the electrical crew who lead or follow, have bucket-lifts and poles to lift any wires hanging down in the way. Out where I live moving house size loads is the norm rather than the other way around, a lot of what I did in my job was moved this way (very large skid modules)
 

sferrin

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kitnut617 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Idiotic!!!
Billions lost because they couldn't be loaded on a flatbed and trucked out of state??

Someone's ass should be fired. They knew perfectly well how serious the storm was.

Should have been trucked out of the area
An F-22 is 13 meters wide and 5 meters high. Moving something that big is a major operation that needs far more than 2 days of preparation: many roads don't have more than 5 meters clearance across and ~4.5 m in height.
Disassembling the aircraft to a road-transportable state could also easily take more than 2 days.
I've seen an entire house moved on interstate highways on more than a few occasions with the very large flatbeds and a few white trucks with yellow hazard lights.
yes, with 3 months of planning to find a clear route and prepare the places where a clear route can't be found (by temporarily removing traffic lights, signs and other obstructions).
Actually, there are routes already built that way so large loads can be moved around. Things like traffic light poles that can be turned and as in the video, the electrical crew who lead or follow, have bucket-lifts and poles to lift any wires hanging down in the way. Out where I live moving house size loads is the norm rather than the other way around, a lot of what I did in my job was moved this way (very large skid modules)
Why would you assume it's that way everywhere? When I lived in East Texas it wasn't unusual to see a house moving down the road on a truck. In Utah I've never seen one.
 

lastdingo

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Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Idiotic!!!
Billions lost because they couldn't be loaded on a flatbed and trucked out of state??

Someone's ass should be fired. They knew perfectly well how serious the storm was.

Should have been trucked out of the area
An F-22 is 13 meters wide and 5 meters high. Moving something that big is a major operation that needs far more than 2 days of preparation: many roads don't have more than 5 meters clearance across and ~4.5 m in height.
Disassembling the aircraft to a road-transportable state could also easily take more than 2 days.
I've seen an entire house moved on interstate highways on more than a few occasions with the very large flatbeds and a few white trucks with yellow hazard lights.
yes, with 3 months of planning to find a clear route and prepare the places where a clear route can't be found (by temporarily removing traffic lights, signs and other obstructions).
An armed service is supposed to do contingency planning ahead. That's about the only excuse for the bloated staffs.

The USAF played hollow force syndrome here: It did not optimise resources allocation for the whole force, but emphasised the preferred parts, such as having many comfortable officers, having many prestige aircraft.

The racket typically goes like this:
(1) Budget does not match irresponsible dreams
(2) forces TO&E is not reduced appropriately, and certainly not the staffs
(3) money gets allocated to preferred prestige things (ship hulls, combat aircraft etc.)
(4) spare parts buys are neglected, munitions buys are neglected, infrastructure reinvestments get neglected
(5) readiness and combat value plunge
(6) top brass cries foul, blames politicians for "hollow force"
(7) irresponsible politicians choose to play 'strong on defense', allocate a bigger budget
(8) top brass dreams grow
(9) rinse, repeat

In this case approx. 5...20 million USD infrastructure investment would have protected the F-22s.
Now they're going to salvage every single airframe. New production is not feasible politically, but expensive rebuilds are very much possible.
In 3 years all that's going to be left from this affair is several hundreds of millions USD additional federal (public) debt and not one officer career will be harmed.
 

Mark S.

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Well, in the video I saw the structures survived the hurricane but the exterior roof panels didn't. Most roof and wall panels are attached with self-tapping sheet metal screws. The panels themselves are steel. You get corrosion and the holes enlarge due to rust. When wind for whatever reason enters the structure and generates lift you get failures. Proper building maintenance is important. In areas that are hurricane prone designing a structure to use bolted in lieu of screwed connections of roof and wall panels prevents a lot of this. You still will have problems with flashings, close-out panels and soffits. These may have been the first to fail in these hangars. Having designed structures all over the country I can tell you because of the lack of snow loads older structures built in the south do not have the added strength to ride out the damaging effects of hurricanes. The weight of the snow especially downwind of the Great Lakes drives building design. Blizzard force winds and heavy snow loads approach hurricane effects. Modern building codes have begun to change this. All structures are designed with enough foundation/anchorage to sustained anticipated wind loads per building codes. It worked in this case as the structure is still standing. Moving forward the major problem is that the older structures don't have the capacity to carry the weight of the stronger and more robustly attached roof and wall panels. This necessitates either strengthening the structure which may be cost prohibitive and or impractical or building new.
 

kitnut617

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sferrin said:
kitnut617 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Idiotic!!!
Billions lost because they couldn't be loaded on a flatbed and trucked out of state??

Someone's ass should be fired. They knew perfectly well how serious the storm was.

Should have been trucked out of the area
An F-22 is 13 meters wide and 5 meters high. Moving something that big is a major operation that needs far more than 2 days of preparation: many roads don't have more than 5 meters clearance across and ~4.5 m in height.
Disassembling the aircraft to a road-transportable state could also easily take more than 2 days.
I've seen an entire house moved on interstate highways on more than a few occasions with the very large flatbeds and a few white trucks with yellow hazard lights.
yes, with 3 months of planning to find a clear route and prepare the places where a clear route can't be found (by temporarily removing traffic lights, signs and other obstructions).
Actually, there are routes already built that way so large loads can be moved around. Things like traffic light poles that can be turned and as in the video, the electrical crew who lead or follow, have bucket-lifts and poles to lift any wires hanging down in the way. Out where I live moving house size loads is the norm rather than the other way around, a lot of what I did in my job was moved this way (very large skid modules)
Why would you assume it's that way everywhere? When I lived in East Texas it wasn't unusual to see a house moving down the road on a truck. In Utah I've never seen one.
I was just pointing out to Harro that over here it's more the norm, besides, they build houses from scratch in Utah -- right ;)
 

TomcatViP

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Mark S. said:
When wind for whatever reason enters the structure and generates lift you get failures. Proper building maintenance is important.
Roof panels aren't just pushed by the wind blowing them away with the wind acting on the structure, in fact it's because the shape of the structure creates a depression when wind ram on one side that lift is generated on the other (typical on triangular roof for example). Roof panels are then in effect sucked away from the structure and then fly like a door barn pushed and swirling by the direct action of the wind on their surface. With wind gust and vortex generated by the other structures around and shapes of the building itself, the structure has to endure alternative loading what aggravates the effect.

This is why I put my line against the dome like compound, the poor achievement from the contractors (design failure) and the generalized nails and plank like construction methods for private owner : Lift is the real enemy.
 

Mark S.

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Lift may be the real enemy but it is accounted for in the design. The issue here is more of building maintenance. Whether the panels were blown off from lift from the outside or wind loads underneath once the building opens up you generally get more failures. That seems to be an arch structure. Those types of hangars were built in the 40's and 50's. A lot of fatigue cycles, wet/dry conditions on those screws holding the panels in place over 60 to 70 years. You would need to look at the segments of the fasteners remaining in the structural steel to determine if it was a pure lift failure or a combination of that with corrosion and fatigue. I'm saying the later. Grab yourself a copy of the Southern Building Code at the nearest library. You will see that height of structure above terrain and other buildings is taken into account in developing the loads including lift generated by the wind. Remember building codes are revised from time to time and the code that the hangar was built under is no where near as comprehensive as today's. The body of knowledge is growing.
 

Jeb

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Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Hobbes said:
kcran567 said:
Idiotic!!!
Billions lost because they couldn't be loaded on a flatbed and trucked out of state??

Someone's ass should be fired. They knew perfectly well how serious the storm was.

Should have been trucked out of the area
An F-22 is 13 meters wide and 5 meters high. Moving something that big is a major operation that needs far more than 2 days of preparation: many roads don't have more than 5 meters clearance across and ~4.5 m in height.
Disassembling the aircraft to a road-transportable state could also easily take more than 2 days.
I've seen an entire house moved on interstate highways on more than a few occasions with the very large flatbeds and a few white trucks with yellow hazard lights.
yes, with 3 months of planning to find a clear route and prepare the places where a clear route can't be found (by temporarily removing traffic lights, signs and other obstructions).
Not to mention that there was a general evacuation of civilians from the area so it's not like you could just throw a line of oversize flatbeds down the ol' highway without any interruption.
 

TomcatViP

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“It turned out none of that [data] was very accurate,” said Gen. Mike Holmes, chief of Air Combat Command.

“The hangars that had a design life to take the highest winds turned out to receive some of the most damage,” Holmes said. “And some little flat ones that were rated to collapse at 75 kt. [wind speed] made it through he hurricane with no problems.”

Holmes said the base was exposed to wind gusts of nearly 150 kt., although Tyndall’s official measuring station registered peak wind gusts of about 112 kt. The eye of the hurricane passed directly over the base, exposing the area to the most severe winds and from opposite directions, Holmes said.

Hours after the storm passed over the base, Tyndall officials released an alarming assessment of the part of the base that housed all of the remaining F-22s. “The flight line is devastated. Every building has severe damage. Many buildings are a complete loss,” base officials said.

Despite the severity of the damage caused by the storm, top Air Force officials insist that none of the wreckage from the hangars that fell on the F-22s caused a total loss.
[...]
“We’ll certainly gather lessons from that,” Holmes said. “And then you have to figure out ways to pay for the lessons that you gather.”
source:
http://aviationweek.com/defense/hurricane-destruction-raised-concerns-about-f-22-hangar-data
 

seruriermarshal

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NEW from Tyndall cmdr: "Only a couple" F-22s remain at the base. All flyable. They will fly to Langley w/in days. Would be sooner but a storm is coming today. I only saw 3 tails here today. 3 temporary hangars remain on flight line. A ton of progress since the storm.
 

bobbymike

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From AFA

TYNDALL AFB, Fla. — The most badly damaged F-22s are now flyable and will depart here within days as more than 1,300 airmen work to bring Tyndall back from the brink following one of the most powerful storms in history.

Seventeen F-22s remained at Tyndall as Hurricane Michael ripped through the base almost three weeks ago, with many officials here initially thinking there was no way Tyndall could come back from the blow. More than 95 percent of buildings on the base were damaged and almost all of the pine trees surrounding the flight line are snapped in half. The 325th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Brian Laidlaw told Air Force Magazine during a visit to the base this week that the damage was “surreal.”

Initial reports focused on the Raptors that remained, many of which rode out the storm in Hangar 5 on the East end of the flight line, which lost its roof in the storm. Air Force officials originally feared some of the Raptors might not fly again, but the service brought in experts and “methodically” removed the aircraft from their hangars. Airmen built three inflatable temporary hangars directly on the flight line, and the F-22s were towed there for assessment. Two F-22s took off for JB Langley-Eustis, Va., on Tuesday afternoon. Air Force Magazine saw two more Raptors in separate hangars at Tyndall and one more on the flight line Wednesday morning.

A minor storm was bearing down on the base Wednesday, bringing rain, limited winds, and slowing plans, but the final Raptors will leave Tyndall for more in-depth assessment and maintenance at Langley in a matter of days, not weeks, Laidlaw said Wednesday.

This progress is a far cry from initial reports and pictures, which showed the roof of hangars fallen onto F-22s and other aircraft. On Wednesday, focus shifted to the rest of the aircraft in the damaged hangar five. Trucks pulled T-38s, used as adversary aircraft, down the flight line to a separate hangar for assessment. Laidlaw said it is too early to determine the extent of damage to the T-38s or other aircraft, including QF-16 targeting drones and Twin Otter aircraft, until the hangar is cleared and a more detailed assessment is made.

“I like our methodology, and our methodology is to not make a problem any worse than it is,” Laidlaw said.

Debris, once scattered everywhere on streets and the flight line, now sits in large piles across the base. Dozens of tents now house many of the 1,300 airmen who are assessing buildings and bringing basic services back to the base.

Tyndall’s air traffic control tower, while largely intact, had its windows blown out and received water damage, so a small temporary tower sits directly off the runway directing the F-22s out and bringing in airlift aircraft carrying airmen, food, tents, vehicles, and other supplies.

Laidlaw said he is trying to determine what buildings can be saved by getting “eyes on” them all by civil engineers, RED HORSE airmen, and contractors. Many buildings need to be demolished, while others area easily saved. Then there are those “in-between” or “yellow” buildings that need a deeper assessment, he said.

Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson visited the base last week, where they announced that Tyndall’s F-22 training mission and the 601st Air Operations Center would be back up and running by the beginning of the year. Laidlaw said Wednesday he is working to determine the capacity available to meet that goal by doing everything possible to keep as much of the key infrastructure available.

“The way I see my role as installation commander is to, as smartly as possible, put Band-Aids on every window we can to keep as much in the decision space as possible,” Laidlaw said.

Tyndall has eight full-mission simulators for the F-22 school house, and the building housing those simulators was slightly damaged. There is still work to do, but they should be up and running by the timeline provided by Pence. F-22s will move to nearby Eglin AFB, Fla., for the flying portion of training.

In advance of the storm, Tyndall evacuated 11,000 people from the community and the most important thing is that no one got hurt, Laidlaw said. Many of these airmen have returned to damaged or destroyed homes, and still unanswered questions about their future, but they have proven to be resilient, he said. Squadron commanders are talking to airmen individually to determine the best way to address their concerns and what they need immediately, as a way to avoid broad “one size fits all” plans that would not be as effective, he said.

“They’ve been incredibly patient with us, I appreciate that,” Laidlaw said. “By and large their spirits are high. They are airmen. Airmen are resilient people. We’re going to get through this.”

The base has returned to life at a pace that didn’t seem possible based on the extent of the damage at first, and that is a testament to the speed at which the Air Force responded and the expertise of the specific airmen that arrived. For example, special tactics airmen had no trouble immediately returning the flightline to operations. RED HORSE airmen from Hurlburt Field, Fla., quickly went to work assessing the facilities, clearing debris, and getting operations going. Base defenders, deployed from Moody AFB, Ga., set out to secure a sprawling facility that didn’t even have a fence line remaining after the storm, Laidlaw said.

“I just let them do what they were trained to do, and here we are, three weeks later, and I couldn’t be more impressed by how much progress we’ve made, and I could not be more proud watching them do what they are trained to do,” he said.
 
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