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A400M engine problems.

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A400M engine problems.

Old 12th Apr 2016, 16:29
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A400M engine problems.

A400M hit by fresh powerplant problems | IHS Jane's 360

-RP
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Old 12th Apr 2016, 16:38
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How sad.

I'm not going to make any snarky comments, I just hope they can get these issues resolved. We NEED this aircraft.
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Old 12th Apr 2016, 20:48
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We do indeed need this aircraft.

Development of airframes and engines takes time - sometimes a very long time. At least they have the engine and are not faced with a hole in the ground.

The future service of the aircraft will be made safer and better because this problem has been recognised.
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Old 12th Apr 2016, 20:57
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Are these the gearbox manufacturing issues?
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 15:33
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We do indeed need this aircraft.
Development of airframes and engines takes time - sometimes a very long time. At least they have the engine and are not faced with a hole in the ground.
Sadly, the fully developed and fully mature C-17 is no longer an option. And while the C-17 is only about 20% bigger, it has nearly 100% greater payload and almost 200% greater range with the same payload, about 100% greater cargo volume, and yet similar short austere field performance.

Last edited by KenV; 13th Apr 2016 at 15:44.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 15:42
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I think the USAF would flog us a couple of theirs...
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 15:46
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I think the USAF would flog us a couple of theirs...
There's still one last white tail that Boeing has not sold.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 15:46
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To be fair though, the A400M is billed a competitor to the C-130J rather than the C-17, so you could swap out C-17 in your post with A400M to get the same argument as to how the A400M is much better than the C-130J.

As you say though, the C-17 is no longer an option so a moot point really.

Is it right that they have similar short austere field performance? Genuine question.

The C-17 supposedly has a CBR of 12

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...rt-gap-225865/

While I have seen the A400M quoted as a CBR of 6.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 18:30
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To be fair though, the A400M is billed a competitor to the C-130J rather than the C-17, so you could swap out C-17 in your post with A400M to get the same argument as to how the A400M is much better than the C-130J.
Excellent point. On the other hand C-17 was billed as a competitor to both the C-130 and the C-5. There was no A400. C-17 was designed to land at 90+% of the airfields a C-130 could land on, and deliver a C-5 dimensional payload, and nearly a C-5 mass payload to the C-130 runway, at strategic range. It's what USAF called direct delivery. Instead of delivering large/heavy loads from a large base to another large base in or near the theater, where the load was broken down for further forwarding using C-130 and if oversize by driving overland, the C-17 could deliver literally any combat equipment in the US Army inventory (including fully armed M1 tanks which the C-5 could not carry) over a strategic range directly into an austere forward base in the theater.

Is it right that they have similar short austere field performance? Genuine question.
Short field performance is similar in that the takeoff distance with little or no load is the same for both (2500 ft) and the landing performance with a 60,000 lb load is also the same (under 2800 ft). With a full assault load the C-17 needs more runway than A400M (3100 ft vs 2800 ft). C-17 also needs stronger runways than A400M, as you said CBR 12 vs CBR 6. But CBR 6 is about equivalent to a plowed field and while very impressive, does not sound to me like a likely real world tasking. To me, if a force needs to go into a plowed field, they'd use helicopters, not a fixed wing airlifter. But I don't know how the British Army operates, so maybe a bad assumption. By comparison the C-27 also has CBR 6, but its 1/4 the size of A400 and in US service never used that capability.

Also C-17 CBR 12 is for 12 passes (or four sorties, where each sortie requires one landing pass, one back taxi pass, and one take off pass. This assumes landing and takeoff into the wind in the same direction. And like tubro props with reversible propellers, C-17 can back under its own power, in C-17 case at MTOGW up a 2% slope.) A400M CBR 6 is for 24 passes. Don't know how many passes at CBR 12. On the other hand C-17 delivers more payload per sortie, so fewer sorties (and thus passes) are required. There are too many variables for a head to head comparison.

Don't get me wrong, the A400 is an impressive airplane for what it was designed to do. I just don't understand its design requirements. C-17 design requirements were based on the following US Army loads:
payload weight: fully armed M1 tank with supporting fuel truck
payload width: two HEMMT 8x8 heavy trucks side-by-side
payload height: AH-64 Apache helo with rotor mast installed under the wing and CH-53 with rotor mast removed behind the wing
payload length: 18 463L pallets.
And all the above must be deliverable over strategic range into an austere, unpaved field of 3500 ft or less.

There were of course many other requirements but the above drove the wing size/loading, fuel capacity, cargo floor width and length, cargo floor strength, cargo compartment height, installed thrust, and high lift systems. I've asked many times but no one seems to know what the requirements drivers were for the A400. Can anyone help out there? What is the A400 design trying to accomplish other than carrying twice a C-130 payload over a slightly greater range? It clearly does that and seems to do it well (at least so far), but what else was it designed to do?
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 19:15
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Apologies for the thread drift, but does anyone know if/when there will be a report issued on the A400 that crashed on it's first flight?

As an engine guy, I've already received a number of questions along the line of 'what happened - how could they load the wrong s/w' and 'how do you know we (Boeing) couldn't have the same thing happen'? It's particularly difficult to answer the second question when you don't know the answer to the first.


This isn't idle curiosity - it's vitally important that all aircraft makers have the information on how Airbus fouled up so that we can take whatever measures are necessary to be sure we are not susceptible to the same foul up.
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 19:26
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KenV.... but what else was it designed to do?

Create jobs for the partner nations .....runs away and stands by for incoming.....
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 20:47
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You got it!

Originally Posted by sandiego89 View Post
Create jobs for the partner nations .....runs away and stands by for incoming.....

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Old 13th Apr 2016, 20:50
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I've asked many times but no one seems to know what the requirements drivers were for the A400. Can anyone help out there?
I'll plead guilty for trying to get the A400M cargo hold to look like a clone of the C-17, but I don't know who specified the CBR figure. However, when I questioned it with the SME from Boscombe who attended the meetings where it was decided he replied along the lines of "The Germans want to reinvade Russia."
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 22:59
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The A400M specification was agreed by the participating nations and coordinated through OCCAR.

The aircraft will carry items which won't fit in a C-130 at speeds greater than those of a C-130 to places where a C-17 cannot go.

It is the best overall solution.

And it's NOT American!!
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Old 13th Apr 2016, 23:38
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And it's NOT American!!
If the engine problems aren't fixed soon, you might wish the engines were American designed and made...
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 00:14
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Turbine ....... its just info thats in the public domain , some difficult issues with a few american engines at the moment, but only a little in the public domain , look at P&W issues with new engine on A320. Most people have forgotten the history of the PW2000 that started as a disaster on the 757 but as a mature engine on the C17 is totally different now
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 01:54
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bvcu,
Just some humor for BEagle. I understand there are growing pains with new engines, but I can tell you there is quite a bit of information in the public domain regarding the P&W geared turbo fan engine for the A-320neo here in the states...
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 02:27
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Are these the gearbox manufacturing issues?
From what I have read it seems there are a couple recent issues with the TP400-D6. One being a quality problem found in some of the gearbox epicyclic output stage ring gears. The gearbox is manufactured by GE/Avio. If it simply turns out to be a manufacturing issue, then the problem can likely be resolved fairly quickly.

The TP400-D6 turboprop is an all new design and more powerful than any turboprop engine produced in the past couple decades outside of Russia. The teething problems it has experienced are fairly typical for a project of this scope. Unfortunately, the aircraft industry has become a victim of its own success, and the general public now expects no serious problems when developing new aircraft designs.
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 06:15
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Last I read there are still two important tasks the A400 cannot do with no solution
in sight.


Air refueling of helicopters due to wake issues.


Simultaneous paratroop drops out the side doors without them being swept together and hitting each other in the airstream behind the aircraft.



While it's other attributes are impressive these seem like serious limitations in a tactical airlifter and the reason why the French just ordered five C130-J's.
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Old 14th Apr 2016, 08:18
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Originally Posted by stilton View Post
there are still two important tasks the A400 cannot do

these seem like serious limitations in a tactical airlifter

Indeed but in reality, how many countries are doing operational helicopters refueling and paratrooper air drop ?
.
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