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Bell 222 & 230

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Bell 222 & 230

Old 15th Dec 2003, 15:31
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Bell 222 & 230

HI Flying a Bell 222 IFR on regular basis in the UK , have not encountered icing yet , but may do in the future ! has anyone any advice on how the B222 handels on encountering inadverent icing conditions
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Old 15th Dec 2003, 17:31
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Devil

Picked up some 'Trace' ice once. It starts at elbow of the wipers.
Noticed slight decrease in A/S, slight vertical vib. Exited as fast as I could. Not Nice, Ice!
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Old 15th Dec 2003, 22:02
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Going way WAY North ? Watch out for the famous ice fog up there !!
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Old 15th Dec 2003, 22:43
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CC5, if you look in the "gallery", p20, you will see what can happen if you go into icing, under controlled conditions. The ice can build rapidly on the rotor, and I suspect a-222 has an improved blade section than we had, so it will probably affect it more. A rise in Tq. for a steady state( level, constant speed) means you are picking it up.I don`t know how well a Bell rotor will self-shed the ice, so I suggest you don`t try to find out either. Ice can also be accumulating on the fin and stabiliser, depending also on exhaust immersion/speed. This can also lead to a stability problem if you have an autopilot,ie the a/c will become "wallowy", and run out of authority.
The engine intakes, if you have grills fitted can also become coated and choked, unless they are heated, and finally, if you get iced up , beware when you come out of it as when it warms and breaks off, it could damage the t/r, or go down an intake.

As I don`t know the -222, all/any/ none of the above may apply as there are so many combinations of temperature/ droplet size/ concentration, that what may be safe in one helo , may be dangerous in a different type, in the same cloud environment,
particularly if it is of a cumulo-form cloud..

Hope that puts your mind at rest for the winter....!
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Old 15th Dec 2003, 23:49
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Correct me if Im wrong, but I didnt think that the Bell 222 was cleared for flight in icing conditions.
Day and night VMC, non-icing conditions or IMC non-icing with the Single/Dual Pilot IMC configuration.

Not teaching to suck eggs but if you fly in icing conditions when the aircraft is not cleared to do so expect some or all of the following:

1. Very rapid build up of ice.
2. The ability to vacate icing conditions may not exist due to terrain etc. so youre stuck there.
3. Loss of lift on the blades due to ice build up.
4. Increase in torque as lift decreases.
5. Decrease in endurance to increased power required.
6. Vibrations as the rotors may shed ice.
7. Airframe damage as the shedding ice hits the airframe (and tail rotor?).
8. Build up of ice on engine intakes, the Particle Separator may not cope with any shed ice.
9. Possible engine failure due to ice build up on intakes.
10. Decrease in single engine performance.
11. Autorotational characteristics almost certainly affected.
12. Increase in aircraft weight and vibration due to ice will alter handling IMC?

On top of that lot the aircraft insurance will probably be invalid due to operating outside of the AFM limitations.
It aint clever and believe me you wont find it funny.
As I said I stand to be corrected.
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 03:00
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Kalif, suggest you re-read CC5's original post, he mentioned'inadvertent' icing conditions. We should all know what can happen if you ice up, but what I think he was after was incipient and initial characteristics of Bell 222 as ice starts to accrue. Most IFR operators have been there at one time or other and it is nice to have an early heads up that things may be going down a path that you don't neccesarily what to go down!!
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 03:46
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oxi
 
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Can anyone add further to icing, particulary pilots in oz, as Im am fairly new to IFR, most of my flying is around NSW and have encountered ice when least expected and at altituides well below the suggested freezing level, the worst some times directily over Sydney and close to summer! I wonder how the BK 117 handels it.

Does anyone have any thunderstorm, lightening and sever turbulance stories (in IMC).

Sorry to steal the thread!!!
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 04:41
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I have encountered some unexpected icing in B-222, enough to cover the front window with rime ice (no windshield de-ice in that one!) and the nose and wings (wing stubs!) had 2cm (almost 1 inch) rime ice covering the leading edge.

This happened at about 2000ca 10Nm from destination and the ice accumulation was over about a 5 min period.

I never noticed any unusual vibration or decrase in airspeed and upon landing at destination there was NO ice at all on the blades or tail section.

So Im pretty happy about flying the B-222 in ice prone areas, although I try to avoid it at all costs.
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 14:14
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oldgit, as I said I stand to be corrected.
CC5. You can still expect all or some of what was listed.
Best bet is have a damn good look at the weather, forecast, route, alternates etc. before you launch. As we all know in the UK, the weather at this time of the year can close in behind you very rapidly and leave you with no option but to continue to destination or alternate.
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 16:32
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Thanks to all

Firstly may I thank you to all who contributed , the information supplied was helpful and informative .when I have been flying in conditions that I think may lead to icing I have switched off the de ice on the windowns so as to give me a clear visual warning that icing is in effect happening , although all the other signs that have been mentioned I also check for.
Thank you for you help CC5
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 16:54
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Hi CC5

You will see any indication of ice accumulation immediately start to build up on the windshield wiper arms and above/below the deiced area of the window.

The problem is if you fly much at night like I do then you will not see the ice building up so I shine my flashlight (torch for Brits) every 5 mins or so at the wiper arms and the wings to check.

In temperatures below -18c the windshield heat should be turned on if so equipped for birdstrike integrity of the front windshield. The front window is designed to withstand a 2 lbs birdstrike @ Vne 150 kts.

Hope you like flying the B-222? It sure is a nice helicopter to fly.
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 17:03
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Devil

CC5- Like I mentioned in my previous post...ice begins to accrue
at the wipers elbow. If you have windshield Anti-ice......leave it on in the operating temp range. Do Not turn the system off.
That will only add to a potential bad situation if and when you encounter the cold stuff!
I flew UH-60's back in the old days, and we had a very complex
Blade De-ice system that allowed for symetrical shedding into known or forecasted moderate iceing. The ice was measured by a sensor wire that was out side the number two engine. So moderate was moderate to the Hawk! Even with the system working, it was very scary flying in 'moderate iceing', terrible whistleing sounds, heavy lateral vibes every few seconds caused by the shedding, and the power/airspeed ratio increasing!
The biggest fear we had was what the flight manual warned concerning heavy and severe iceing: The potential to lose autorotation capability. Having said that, with all the Blade De-ice, Engine Anti-ice/ Inlet Anti-ice and Windshield Anti-ice systems,
IMC was a regular occurance at +4 degrees or less in cloud......but still very scary. Most civil heli's cannot afford the weight penalty, let alone the cost for such systems. I think the
person that comes up with a viable system for light/medium IFR
heli's, will have reached a hero status on the same level as
Igor S!
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Old 16th Dec 2003, 21:02
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I'd hate to encourage you but the large blades of the 222 handle ice much, much better than a 76 or a 61. Having flown in the Canadian north for two decades, I've had a few encounters with ice, and the worst was in the 222.

We flew into unforecast freezing rain on a black night in the far north and in the time it took us to do an immediate 180, we built up a solid 1/2 inch of clear ice on the windows. We made an immediate landing at a nearby runway, even running it on as we weren't sure about our performance (although everything seemed normal). On shutdown, the 1/2 inch was everywhere, including the main and tail rotors....smooth and clear.

A buddy though, was coming down at 2000 fpm at 100% Q at Vbroc in the same aircraft and was lucky to shed it coming though 1000' agl. That was rime icing he picked up in cloud, hoping to climb through a layer to get on top. Imagine the indigestion!

Although I avoid ice or any risk of it like the plague, and wouldn't recommend anyone go near it, answering your question, the 222 does handle it better than aircraft with smaller blades.
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Old 17th Dec 2003, 12:43
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oxi
 
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What altituides do you guys get around at ?

In OZ i usually aim for 10 000 feet and hope to be on top, most of the time this can get me above the weather, especialy the nasty CB's we get in the summer, and hopefully ,,,,at least,,, Im not in cloud and still trying to get around embedded charile bravos.
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Old 17th Dec 2003, 16:01
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Usually 1000 to 2500 sometimes up to 6000 but its not really practical to climb high for 15 to 30 min legs.
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Old 17th Dec 2003, 17:41
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I've got a dent in a tail rotor on a 222 from landing in a confined area on a clear day at -40C and idling for twenty minutes waiting to load our patient. When we lifted out of the hole, I was suprised to see all the fog that had formed around us (I couldn't see it while in the hole), flying out the machine gave quite a shudder and on landing we had a nice ding in the tail from shedding ice.

At 9000 feet at -29 C in a S76 we picked up so much ice the pitot heats couldn't keep up. Watch out for the tops, they are the worse.

So I've picked it up from the surface to 9000 feet, from 0 C to -40 C, and pretty much everywhere in between. I'd recommend avoiding cloud below zero, or at the very least, seriously limiting your exposure, as I've been caught a few times.
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Old 20th Dec 2003, 07:49
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Always wanted to fly the B 222, but I dont dig the ice flying!

I IFR climbed through to 6000 (which was LSALT) at 2 degrees indicated in a UH60 when the ice detector suddenly went straight to "severe". And severe it was - I looked outside on to the leading edges of the external fuel tank support wing and fuel jug to see a layer of ice building rapidly. The ice continued to build until about 2 inches had accumulated. There was lots of vibrations as expected, and torque changes required between the anti ice and de ice systems shedding, but the stabilator kept failing due to severe ice build up and had to operated manually. This experience has given me a very healthy respect for the rapidity with which ice can build up, and the severity of the consequences of accumulation.

Now that I fly machines without anti or de ice capability, I tread very carefully. My IFR climb checks include a temperature check going through each 1000 ft. At plus 4 deg I would stop my climb where at all possible, get the copilot/crewman to begin a scan for ice build up, and we use the torch at night. Below 2 degrees, there has to be a very good reason for me to continue the flight (ie medical) and I use other routes to lower my LSALT if possible, and as a last resort now that GPS is all kosher, I will calculate my LSALT based on present position rather than over the entire route so that I only have to fly at higher alts over very short distances.

oxi: I seem to have a different philosophy than you, but I am suprised that you can get over Cumulo Bastages at only 10,000! I am assuming that you have WX Radar - thats what I will use to avoid embedded CB (apart from trying not to get airborne in the first place!!).
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Old 20th Dec 2003, 08:10
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Question 76 icing

Hey Bladestrike!!!

Last I checked, the 76A/A+/A++/C/C+...... IS NOT certified for icing conditions.

Reference..." timing your exposure".

Be it ten seconds or ten minutes, it's contradicting the RFM.

D.K
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Old 20th Dec 2003, 20:36
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I'm well aware of the limitations in the RFM, DK, flying in cloud at those temps wasn't intentional, and I'm not endorsing it, rather to educate through my misfortunate experience.

The question is "Does all flight in cloud below 0 C constitute icing conditions?"

I've always said yes, and avoided it, at least to the best of my ability as forecasts aren't always accurate in my neck of the woods, but it seems I run into more and more guys who claim icing conditions are only those in which you actually pick up ice. in which case, you turn around or take whatever steps neccessary to leave said icing conditions. In my experience the potential for icing is too high.

My post was to answer the question of where can you pick it up, and I've picked it up in a variety of conditions, some unexpected.
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Old 23rd Dec 2003, 06:56
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oxi
 
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Helmut fire, yes we have weather radar fitted, and I guess probably 70% of the time I can get on top at 10, most of my lowest safes are around 6 so its not tooo much further and much smooooother.
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