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View Diary: $1.6 BILLION for Bush's *23* EUROPEAN helicopters (34 comments)

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  •  $265 Million a Piece (0+ / 0-)

    Each helicopter is costing an average of $265 million a piece.

    Meanwhile, most of the helicopters being used in Afghanistan and Iraq are older than their pilots.  The Chinook helicopters are particularly old and have been crashing regularly. The Chinooks were supposed to be retired years ago, but are still in use because of problems with the Osprey replacements.  Those new hugely expensive short-take-off Osprey aircraft had a bad habit of suddenly crashing, killing everyone aboard.  

    Congressman Curt Weldon (R-Boeing) kept pushing for the US to buy the Ospreys, even though their costs kept multiplying and their delivery date was missed by more than a decade.  That is because Boeing was building the aircraft in his district, and Weldon has much power on the defense committee.

    •  Actually, their extensive use in Afghanistan (0+ / 0-)

      is due to altitude.
      Basically, tail rotor helos lose a lot of control authority at higher altitudes where the tandem rotor layout does not.
      Basically, the small and high speed tail rotors become less effective as altitude goes up, and the US helicopters have not been over-designed for high altitude ops like the Russian ones, which is why the Russians own the sky over Nepal.

      6/24/05: Charlie the Tuna Creator Dies En lieu of flowers, please bring mayonnaise, chopped celery and paprika.

      by LunkHead on Mon May 08, 2006 at 11:41:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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