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Harrier T12A - specops bus ?

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Harrier T12A - specops bus ?

Old 27th Sep 2014, 11:31
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Love the smug look Bond gives the other agent in that clip.

Another similar fictional use of a VTOL aircraft, though using the two seat Yak-38 Forger-B, was in a Quatermass novel, in which one brought a Soviet scientist to London, landing in Hyde Park and using special pods to collect samples of material floating in the air on the way. The Forger was destroyed when a drunk mercenary managed to press the self destruct button while playing about in the cockpit. Oops.

I always thought that the pod idea is a great one but what circumstances could it be used where either insertion by submarine or helicopter or a HALO jump would not be available.

But the use of a two-seater for SOE-style insertions and extractions -despite the noise- could have been used under the right conditions.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 11:53
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Martin....I remember all the Quatermass stuff, right back to the original Tv serial "The Quatermass Experiment" in 1953, iirc. There were four TV serials, the three first ones on the BBC...including "Quatermass 2" and "Quatermass and the Pit" and the final one was on ITV and involved the Professor with an alien harvesting of humanity from stone circles. As far as I know, there are three books...being the scripts of the first three TV serials. I haven't come across any other Quatermass books...I would be interested in any other details you can give of the novel to which you refer? Was it written by Nigel Kneale, the original creator?
To get back on topic....I recall the London to New York air race in which the Harrier participated. I believe there was a move to hover the Harrier alongside the Post Office Tower and the Empire State building and have the passenger/conpetitor enter and leave by walking along the wing.....(!)
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 13:52
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Molemot...

PM inbound.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 13:58
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ShotOne,

I'm sure they did, however I didn't! I think you can see why from the various CONOPs paintings, it would take a CVS's entire force of FA2s to bring back a mixture of rescuers and rescued numbering 16. From about 70 nm away maximum. On a high pressure, low temperature day. From somewhere you could get the stovies into and out of in squadron strength. Why not send a single junglie and use two fighters for RESCAP?

...nice idea for a bit of alcohol induced war gaming. No practical fixed wing application in my, as ever, humble opinion.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 14:17
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the use of a two-seater for SOE-style insertions and extractions -despite the noise- could have been used under the right conditions.

Like no one within 20 nm of the Landing Point perhaps?
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 15:55
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Why have we decided this was a use for the two seater? The T10 and T12 had stacks of CoG corners, which I can't imagine this would help. Also why send two chaps when one would do?
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 16:34
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'Cos an AWI in a single sticker would probably cock it up, at least a T12 would have a QFI in it to demonstrate his god like VSTOL handling............
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 17:33
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Or maybe we've stumbled across the only use for a QFI! Getting out and closing the door for the SF.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 17:55
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orca

Because its a T Mk 4 in the book (fit was 2x 100 gall tanks and 2 baggage pods). I've dug out my copy of the book and tried to work out how far the flight would have been from the references in the book. I reckon a low level phase one way of around 650-700km. Drops off the tanker over Norway in the area of Narvik, Low level over Norway with penetration crossings of Sweden and Finland airspace before crossing the Norwegian / Soviet boarder just south of Krikenes. Of course as soon as the Harrier was a reasonable distance back into NATO airspace, it could go high level, but that bit isn't covered in the book. Also the Harrier T4 were fitted with TFR according to the book. Writers have no sense of distance.

The Extin pods were something that came along much later and at the time that the book was written, the GR5 was going to be a re-winged GR3 (1980).

Last edited by MAINJAFAD; 27th Sep 2014 at 18:15.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 18:03
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Originally Posted by WhiteOvies
For more fictional Harrier exploits James Bond flies one in the novel Win, Lose or Die by John Gardner
And, on the big screen, in The Living Daylights.



I/C
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 20:06
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Mainjafad,

I see!

If it helps (but in no way trying to detract from the writer's licence!):The 6600 lbs of fuel in the T4 would have given you 5800 until you needed to be in the landing environment, which at about 120 lbs per minute for 420 kts would give you a total range from tanker to hover/ crash of about 340 miles.

You could (as you say) profit from going high I think the high level bingo calculation was something like 1200 plus ten pounds per mile.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 21:21
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Why would SF need to do any of this? They are HALO trained. Kick 'em out at anywhere from 10 to 30K and see you later.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 22:24
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You're assuming a permissive air defence environment where you can cruise about in a herc.
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Old 27th Sep 2014, 23:50
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There is little point to this delivery system in all but the most niche* application when you consider:

U.S. Special Forces & Polish Special Operations Forces. UH-60 Black Hawk Helicopter. - YouTube

A jet would require a decent piece of Tarmac bloody miles from the target. All advantages gained by speed are lost when there is a 10 mile offset that the 1 or 2 man team to cover to target. Just put a full team on target!!

Osama bin laden will testify. (Notwithstanding a screwup in the landing phase!!)

*suggestions welcome!
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 00:04
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Your assuming its a job that requires a team... What about a job that just requires a spotting scope or a [email protected] designator... The tasks exist, but the question is do they exist in sufficient quantities to justify an additional capability or do you just make do with playing with what you've got ?
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 00:11
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So, in an attempt to summarise. Even the uber T12A would have to deal with restrictive CofG limitations that would make drop offs/pick ups very "tricky". Coming off the tanker with full tanks would only give 340nm to the landing point using low level penetration, and if you could go high level why use a Harrier anyway, just parachute in - then after the 340nm flight what exactly was the T12A supposed to burn for the return journey ?

Am I close ?

Also, I never did notice anyone mention what a T12A could VTOL lift in terms of fuel, 2 (empty ?) drop tanks, and 2 crew on an average soviet sunny day in the remote Russian Steppes, assuming of course that 007 had made his way to the rendezvous on a stolen moped - but that would be interesting if anyone has a lbs estimate?
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 00:48
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Fonsini

340 NM total round trip and not counting time on the ground. In the book in question, the Harrier drops it's passenger off within 10 to 20 Miles of the Norwegian / Soviet border on a cold arctic night so hot and high isn't an issue, plus the only bits of the mission that are VL / VTO are in the middle of the sortie with tanker support either side (its just that the tanker has to be a lot closer to the drop off point than Thomas states in the novel). As most posts on here have stated, there are better ways of getting a large force on the ground, but the point of the Harrier in this matter is getting one or two people on the ground (and maybe back out) much in the same way as the RAF supported SOE with Lysanders in WWII.
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 01:40
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MAINJAFAD - ah 340 round trip depending on ground delay, gotcha.

Any thoughts on how much fuel a T12A could lift in VTOL with 2 crew and 2 tanks?
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 07:03
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My guess back in post 8 was 2500lb, if we really do need the extra bloke then we could say 2300lb.

The 340nm figure was for a T4 with 100 gallon tanks which gave it a total load of 6600lb.
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Old 28th Sep 2014, 07:49
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Main...

Why not just use a Lysander...?
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