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Post Info TOPIC: New U.S. "black" helicopter type downed in Pakistan ?


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Date: May 15, 2011
RE: New U.S. "black" helicopter type downed in Pakistan ?
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Well they used a graphic of David Cenciotti's concept so I assume they're just comparing and contrasting with the Comanche.



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Date: May 18, 2011
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And now they speculate about a modified MH-47:

http://cencio4.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/mh-47x3.jpg



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Date: May 24, 2011
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http://cencio4.wordpress.com/2011/05/17/stealth-black-hawk-update/

Three fuselage configurations for low radar cross sections were developed by the Applied Technology Laboratory. [...] The main rotor pylon fairings and tail surfaces aft of a tail fold hinge for each configuration were the same as those for the baseline UH60A. In the initial portion of this study, the weight and costs (percent of total) were developed for sections of the baseline UH60A fuselage. [...] Structural concepts were developed which could be applied to each configuration using conventional materials. An assessment of safety, fail-safety, and maintainability for each configuration was performed. The change in structural weight and the percentage change in cost for each configuration using the concepts developed were compared to those of the baseline. One concept was selected and applied to the three configurations.
Having selected the structural concept with the lowest weight change and percentage cost change for the three fuselage configurations, the effect on weight and costs using advanced materials was developed and applied to the three configurations. To evaluate the impact of the results of the fuselage study, design attributes of six helicopters were developed using a Helicopter Design Model (HDM) computer program.

Three low radar cross section fuselage configurations for this study were developed by the Applied Technology Laboratory. The first configuration slightly modified the nose section from the baseline configuration; the second configuration changed the fuselage shape along the lines of a truncated triangular prism; the third extended canted flat side shaping throughout the fuselage. The tail surfaces and main rotor pylon fairing were the same as those of the baseline UH60A.

CONFIGURATION 1

This configuration alters the baseline fuselage forward of the mid-cabin section (the ****pit). Although this configuration is different from the baseline, the internal structure must be compatible with the forward cabin to avoid a heavy joining structure. The overall length is slightly increased due to this configuration.

CONFIGURATION 2

This configuration is basically a trapezoidal cross section airframe having sides canted inward 30° and made up of flat exterior structural panels. This configuration is wider at the bottom of the fuselage and narrower at the top of the fuselage than the baseline. This configuration is slightly longer than the baseline UH60A, and its overall height is slightly larger than the baseline. The increased length, width, and height of Configuration 2 does not allow an aircraft of this size to meet the air transportability requirements of the baseline. The narrow upper fuselage causes the pilot and copilot seats to be spaced closer to each other, and shoulder room in the main cabin is decreased. The main cabin floor is approximately 6 inches higher than the baseline from the ground. The increased floor-to-ground height causes difficulties for combat troops to enter or leave the aircraft quickly. Minor modifications of the mold lines for the transition and tail-cone sections were made to properly house the tail rotor shaft of the baseline UH60A.

CONFIGURATION 3

This configuration is basically a flat side cross section airframe having sides canted inward 50 and is tapered in width from a narrow ****pit section to a transition section as wide as the baseline UH60A. The tail-cone is a rectangular section which is narrower than the baseline. The narrow ****pit causes the pilot and copilot seats to be spaced closer to each other; space for four-across seating in the main cabin is decreased. The ****pit and main cabin floors are at the same height from the ground as the baseline. The slope of the windshields may cause problems of visibility for the flight crew. Minor modifications of the mold lines for the transition and tail-cone sections were made to properly house the tail rotor shaft of the baseline UH60A.

ADVANCED MATERIAL APPLICATION

Advanced composite materials can be used in the construction of the three fuselage shapes considered in this study. Studies, have shown that the use of composite materials can reduce both fuselage weight and cost. The fuselages of this study are relatively lightly loaded compared to fixed-wing aircraft. To efficiently use advanced materials in the fuselages, very light composite skins are used in the post-buckled stress state. [...]

CONCLUSIONS

Structural concepts developed for the three LECS configurations showed that extensive reshaping, as exemplified by Configuration 2, would increase fuselage weight from that of the baseline UH-60A fuselage by 223 pounds and cost by 3.65 percent. When advanced materials were used Configuration 2 decreased
from the baseline fuselage weight and cost by 116 pounds and 3.98 percent respectivdly. Total aircraft performance capability was degraded primarily by drag effects. The aerodynamic analysis indicated that Configuration 2 would have a vertic climb rate at 15 percent of the baseline. Weight, cost, and performance penalties were less in Configurations 3 and 1 respectively.

Based on the results of this study, the following conclusions are made:

1. The use of advanced materials can result in both weight and cost savings over the baseline fuselage, even with the most severe change in LRCS configurations presented.
2. Without the use of advanced materials, the LRCS Configurations 2 and 3 significantly increase both weight and cost of the total aircraft compared to the baseline UH60A.
3. Minor changes to the nose section of Configuration 1 result in negligible fuselage difference to the weight and cost of the fuselage.
4. Consideration of the total aircraft attributes show that vertical drag penalties appear to be of greater magnitude than the structural weight changes involved with the fuselages of Configurations 2 and 3.
Even with the use of advanced materials, the vertical drag penalty exceeds any weight savings.

The sketch was revised to take the document into consideration (without forgetting it was issued at the end of the ’70s). Even the main rotor was redesigned to make its head slightly larger (with a noise reduction cover sheltering the motion-control technology used to input low-frequency variations of rotor blade pitch-angle, as tested by NASA) .

One last thing worth a mention.

In the aftermath of the crash landing, on May 5, Jon Nowinski, an investigative reporter and founder of the Smoking Gun Research Agency (Welcome to the SGRA...) sent me an email to let me know that:

[... ] over the last few days there has been an increased number of late-night helicopter flights to the Sikorsky plant. While that doesn’t entirely stand out as odd, it is interesting to note that normally these flights are related to testing aircraft, as well as consistant with what happens when a Sikorsky helo goes down in military action. After an accident like that, military investigators and officials frequently come out to the Sikorsky plan for a debriefing during which they review the operation



-- Edited by Air_Gopher on Tuesday 24th of May 2011 10:08:39 PM



-- Edited by Leela25 on Wednesday 7th of January 2015 04:20:37 AM

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Veteran Member - Level 2

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Date: May 24, 2011
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Hi Air_Gopher, excellent find. Thank you very much.



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Date: May 24, 2011
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Wow. Very interesting indeed!

And guess what? Some clever guys are already marketing a scale model of the "Stealth Hawk"!!!



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Stéphane



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Date: May 25, 2011
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Pakistan returns U.S. helicopter from bin Laden raid

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20110524/wl_nm/us_usa_pakistan_helicopter

Pakistan returns U.S. helicopter from bin Laden raid
Stewart Phil Stewart – 6 mins ago

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Pakistan has returned to the United States wreckage of a U.S. helicopter destroyed during the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, a Pentagon official told Reuters on Tuesday, but the gesture was expected to do little to improve strained ties.

The U.S. Navy SEAL team that stormed bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, on May 2 blew up the chopper after it was damaged during a hard landing. They wanted keep sensitive U.S. technology out of enemy hands.

But bits of the helicopter, including the tail section, remained behind and the United States demanded that Pakistan return them to U.S. custody.

"It (the wreckage) was returned over the weekend and is now back in the United States," Pentagon spokesman Colonel Dave Lapan said.

The raid that killed bin Laden badly damaged U.S.-Pakistan relations, and nagging questions remain in Washington about how bin Laden managed to go unnoticed for years in the garrison town of Abbottabad, only 30 miles from Pakistan's capital, Islamabad. Some U.S. officials speculate he must have had support.

In turn, Pakistan has branded the raid a violation of its sovereignty, since Islamabad was not informed about the U.S. operation until it was over. Pakistan's parliament has threatened to cut supply lines to U.S. forces in Afghanistan if there are more military incursions.

Senator John Kerry, on a trip to Islamabad on May 16, described a Pakistani pledge to return the chopper's wreckage as one step needed to rebuild trust between the two countries which was badly damaged by the raid.

TOO LITTLE, TOO LATE?

But Bruce Riedel, a former CIA official who has advised President Barack Obama on policy in Pakistan and Afghanistan, said returning the helicopter fell far short of what it would take to mend frayed ties.

"It's too little, too late to change the downward spiral in U.S.-Pakistani relations," Riedel said.

Even before bin Laden's death, bilateral ties had reached a low point over Pakistan's arrest of a CIA contractor and mounting U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan's western regions.

The government of President Asif Ali Zardari, along with Pakistan's even more powerful military leaders, has denied any prior knowledge of bin Laden's whereabouts.

But some U.S. lawmakers are calling for a radical shift in U.S. policy on Pakistan as officials brace themselves for possible revelations about Pakistani complicity in data seized from bin Laden's compound.

On Tuesday, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates acknowledged the "trust deficit" between the two countries. But he also said Pakistan was too important to walk away from.

"Pakistan is very important, not just because of Afghanistan but because of its nuclear weapons and because of the importance of stability in the subcontinent," Gates told an audience at the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington think-tank.

"So we need to keep working at this."

(Additional reporting by Missy Ryan and David Alexander; Editing by Bill Trott)



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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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Wouldn't it be related to the new helis that broke the barrier of the 400 km/h "recently" ?
If my memories are correct those helis were still prototypes, one made by Sikorsky,and if I'm not mistaken Eurocopter was making the otehr one.
What ""if"" and only ""if"" what got gunned down was one early prototype of those put into military service, and who got cleanly destroyed to make sure no one would know that it's in service, kinda like the Blackbird SR-71, that until the end of the 70's was a supersecret spyplane.

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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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Are you referring to the Sikorsky X-2 and Eurocopter X3? Supposedly the X-2 hasn't even reached production yet, and a planned military derivitive is supposed to enter service in 2014. Eurocopter's entry will not enter production, and definately will NOT enter service with it's dangerous propeller design. After the X-3 demonsrator's success they will be looking into the X-4 design to modify it for actual service, civil and military. These machines are nowhere near ready for active use.



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Alan Dallas


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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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I guess that's the ones i remember of.
I looked a bit ofr where I read that but no way to get my hands on it.
I guess I'll need to search some more.

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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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So far we believe it's a basic snap-on kit for the MH-60. Sort of low-tech from... what, I think the 80's? But cool-looking nonetheless. Still speculation at this point.



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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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I see.
But still it doesn't justifies the full destruction of an aircraft.
Having an aircraft gunmed is something that can happen and having them modded a tad bit isn't surprising but would this justify the destruction of it completely ?
After all if it's jsut a regular heli why just not leave it there ? Or just take it away before press comes.
To me this makes more sense.

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Date: Jun 23, 2011
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That part doesn't matter, even if it were a standard MH-60 they would still have to rig it. The technology and intelligence incorporated with one aircraft can be enough to foil an entire operation if it were to fall into enemy hands. It's standard proceedure.

To just airlift it out would be a more time-consuming process, especially since no Chinooks accompanied the other aircraft. Demo is much quicker and easier.



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Date: Nov 8, 2011
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You'd be surprised - or not - at how many people on YouTube and places are commenting on this being an RAH-66 Comanche. Some are even calling it things like a UH-60 Comanche. Not quite.

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Date: Nov 8, 2011
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It's popular culture. Mention a stealth helicopter, the one and only LHX survivor immediately comes to mind.

I have always thought the cancellation was a cover to secretly continue the development, but I've come to realize that's nothing more than conspirasy theory. The US has been experimenting with signature-reduction technology for the UH-60 for years now. It just hasn't been a widely-covered subject since a dominating ammount of the tech is classified.



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I guess it was cheaper to adapt some Comanche features and technology to an existing and proven platform, i.e. the Black Hawk, rather than do a whole new helo from scratch.

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Stéphane



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Date: Nov 10, 2011
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Bear in mind that the Comanche was not just about stealth.

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Date: Nov 11, 2011
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Agreed. I mean the US neededat  least something higher-grade to replace the old AH-1 and OH-58s! It was supposed to be super agile and fast and be designed with crashworthy construction.

Furthermore being that it was such an advanced machine, and an expensive program at that, it was a good example of biting off more than one can chew. The systems being incorporrated into the thing were very new, and the more demands the aircraft had in terms of general combat requirements, the more expensive it got, because new upgrades to the already fairly new systems were needed.

It was a big-ass money pit. Just imagine if they continued development, the price of producing such a beast!  D:



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Yes, Leela, and I believe the same reasoning prevailed when the AH-56 Cheyenne was turned down in favor of the far less risky AH-1 Cobra, which built upon the reputation and reliability of a proven platform, the "Huey" series. True, it was not half the performer the Cheyenne might have been in combat, but it filled a gap until the Apache came to complement it. I guess the same will apply here: improved stealthy Black Hawks until a more sophisticated, dedicated attack platform can be made available.

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Date: Nov 13, 2011
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Leela25 wrote:

Agreed. I mean the US neededat  least something higher-grade to replace the old AH-1 and OH-58s! It was supposed to be super agile and fast and be designed with crashworthy construction.

Furthermore being that it was such an advanced machine, and an expensive program at that, it was a good example of biting off more than one can chew. The systems being incorporrated into the thing were very new, and the more demands the aircraft had in terms of general combat requirements, the more expensive it got, because new upgrades to the already fairly new systems were needed.

It was a big-ass money pit. Just imagine if they continued development, the price of producing such a beast!  D:


OH. MY. GOD! You are my absolute dream girl! Most guys who think they know it all don't even grasp these fundamentals about the Comanche program!

And now to add something more constructive... indeed apart from the Comanche just being about stealth (which is a common misconception)... it was also the U.S. Army's first dedicated air-to-air helicopter, the first all-composite helicopter in the U.S. inventory (and perhaps the world) and had advanced flight controls, expanded flight envelopes, the ability to do complex manoeuvers and sensor fusion. To name but a few features off the top of my head.



-- Edited by Flyboy on Monday 14th of November 2011 12:40:12 PM

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Date: Nov 13, 2011
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I'm hearing around that two different types of MH-60 stealth kits were involved in the raid. Could be rumors.



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Alan Dallas


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Date: Nov 13, 2011
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noise reduction kit and complete stealth kit?

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Date: Nov 13, 2011
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Gunship wrote:

I'm hearing around that two different types of MH-60 stealth kits were involved in the raid. Could be rumors.


 

They're discussing just that at SPF. My opinion on the matter is the same as member Jockular's... "it's classic disinfo to suggest there's something more secret than the newly glimpsed secret."



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Date: Nov 15, 2011
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Guys,
This is definitively not an unmanned or it is a giant one..!!! in the fourth pict from the left (Stephane post) the hook of the crane is around 25 cm high compare it with the tail rotor fairing and you will find the fairing is about 1 meter in diameter.
Copy the picture an turn it around to have the rotor in "normal position and you will see that it cannot be an unmanned small craft...
The 5 blades are making sense too as it would make the tail rotor quieter and provide the extra power needed because of the fairing masking a good part of the blades.

My opinion, is this crash was an accident, and they try to cover the remains with explosive, unfortunately they did not realize the wall would protect the tailboom offering a big chunk for the news..!!!
Experts in demolition under pressure and rush did not remember explosives are powerful but work always in the direction of less effort.. hence the simple block wall protecting the tail..



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Date: Feb 16, 2012
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In the event of a downed aircraft it's standard procedure to destroy it, stealth or no stealth. There are also specific procedures for securing and/or erasing avionics, etc. The Army Combat Search and Rescue procedures (army reg 525-90) summarizes this well:
"(a) Classified equipment and documents on the aircraft should be destroyed.
(b) If recovery is impractical, the aircraft should be destroyed, if possible."

Aircrew and "cargo" are trained in how to do so. The exact procedures for securing IFF codes aren't public, but the policy of destroying the aircraft is definitely public. Destruction of the aircraft was just procedure, not cover up.

Ray Leoni's book on the Blackhawk does shed a lot of light on what might be involved in modifying a UH-60 to the configuration seen in Abbotabad.

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Stingray wrote:

That part doesn't matter, even if it were a standard MH-60 they would still have to rig it. The technology and intelligence incorporated with one aircraft can be enough to foil an entire operation if it were to fall into enemy hands. It's standard proceedure.

To just airlift it out would be a more time-consuming process, especially since no Chinooks accompanied the other aircraft. Demo is much quicker and easier.


 

In the late 80s there was an set of Army efforts to provide signature reductions for some helos. As I'm sure forum members know, some OH-58s have visible signature reductions since the early 90s, there are kits for these helos that further reduce their signatures but they're rarely used. Kits for the AH-64 and UH-60 were also tested. A specific (specialized) model of UH-60 received a reduced observables package in the early 90s and was flight tested in the western US. This was more than a snap on kit, but the aircraft was still recognizable as a UH-60.

 

From the Abbottabad wreckage photos we can see a Blackhawk-like rotorhead, a very unusual tail, a snapped tail rotor drive shaft, and some of two main rotor blades.

The tail rotor drive shaft does appear consistent with the composite drive shaft implemented for the UH-60M program.

Measurement of the semi-intact main rotor blades in photos suggests they are more closely related to the new UH-60M rotor with a wider chord and new airfoil. The chord is close, the cross section is close, but some characteristics of the UH-60 main rotor blade is not there.

It's very difficult to tell anything definitive from the two photos I have seen of the rotor head, but it does appear very much like a UH-60 rotorhead (as opposed to, say, an S-92).

 

The tail, though, is very different. During the development of the Blackhawk, the UTTAS demonstrator flew with many different tail configurations, as the tail was the source of several major problems during development. Eventually the large stabilator was chosen as the solution, after much trial and error. The wreckage shows a forward swept all moving stabilator having area similar to that of a UH-60. If this tail surface were added to a UH-60 it would significantly alter the flying qualities of the aircraft.

 

Parts recovered from the crash site had serial numbers indicating a date of manufacture from 2009 and 2010. So far I have not had luck connecting some of these parts to DoD funding accounts, but I'm still working on it.



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Thanks quellish for sharing your insight, knowledge and provisional conclusions on the subject. It's quite a fascinating program!

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Date: Aug 9, 2012
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Oh boy...

 

http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_1_5/1323766__ARCHIVED_THREAD____Code_Name__
Geronimo_set_pictures.html&page=1#i33880799

http://theaviationist.com/2012/08/07/stealth-chopper-new/



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Date: Aug 9, 2012
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Oh wow, not even close to what I thought it looked like

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Date: Aug 9, 2012
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Still not it. If you read through the links, you'll find it's just a movie prop.



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Date: Jan 6, 2013
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Any recent news on this thing? It kills me that I still can't find anything solid on it yet.evileye



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