He did what?

Greetings again, fellow Murdoc-cultists. The great and powerful Murdoc is once again goofing off, and has asked me to take up the slack with a few posts for you to educate and amuse yourself, and to productively use your time at work.

Our first topic is the troubled V-22 Osprey Tilt-Rotor, which is flying right over my head as we speak. The 418th flight test squadron out of Edwards in California has temporarily relocated to the tiny, tiny airport in Winchester, Va, only a half hour from my fastness in the wilderness. If you follow this link here, you can watch a very small video that shows some CV-22’s landing and whatnot, and hear the reporter mispronounce several words.

The reason the Ospreys are in my neck of the woods is simple. They need the bad weather that California simply refuses to provide. In particular, they’re looking for fog in which to test their terrain guidance systems. There’s typically a lot of fog up here, so they shouldn’t have too much trouble.

The Air Force version isn’t scheduled to enter service until 2009, but the Marine MV-22 will be heading to Iraq in September.

I haven’t actually seen one yet, they’re actually flying a bit west of where I live. I am thinking of driving the boy up to the airport to see if we can catch a glimpse of one of those, and if I do, I’ll post pics if I can get some decent ones.

Cross posted at that most excellent blog, the Ministry of Minor Perfidy. In fact, go there and read this post again.


  1. You must have missed the part where she mentioned, ‘The CV-22 Osprey tilt-rotter aircraft.’ I could have sworn she also said it was ‘fart helicopter and part airplane’ but on further examination of the video evidence I had to rule in favor of the sanitized transcript. As for driving out to see these things careen through the mountains, I wouldn’t advise it. That’s as crazy as the trip I took out to see Mt. St. Helen’s the week before it blew. Red zone! I don’t give a damn about no stinkin’ red zone. I’ve been hunting up there for years. Sometimes I complain that stupid should hurt, and other times I demonstrate why I’m lucky it doesn’t. Anyway, the airplane has already killed 30. Don’t you be yet another horrifying statistic.

  2. It ways too expensive relative to any performance increase it has over contemporary helicopters. To procure it in numbers will bleed the budget.

  3. You think the V-22 is stupid? Check this out. A low-observable gunship? I’m going to puke. Requirements for the Air Combat Command’s (ACC’s) bomber and the gunship are still being drawn up. But, both commands agree on some key characteristics: a degree of low observability (LO)–not necessarily full stealth–and endurance. The future gunship will look nothing like today’s lumbering platform, and it could actually wind up appearing more like a B-2. ‘I don’t think the transport next-generation gunship will be on a mobility platform because you are not going to need to carry around all that weight,’ says Lt. Gen. Michael Wooley, outgoing Afsoc commander. ‘If you are not carrying around that big gun and all of that heavy ammunition you don’t need a big [transport] that is in itself vulnerable.’ Wooley will be replaced by his current vice commander, Maj. Gen. Donald Wurster, later this year. ACC has announced it will not push the state-of-the-art for its next-generation bomber, which must be fielded beginning in 2018. That time frame and limited funding are prompting the Air Force to scale back earlier aspirations for a highly stealthy platform equipped with exotic directed-energy weapons. Afsoc has traditionally latched onto the Air Force’s larger buys when procuring a platform in order to prevent having to dedicate funding to a separate development project. By the way, did anyone catch the scene in Transformers where the AC-130 and A-10s blew the hell out of that scorpion looking robot? That was great!

  4. I wasn’t planning on going to where they’re flying, I was planning on going to where they live when they’re on the ground. Stealth gun ship. Maybe they’ll put silencers on the 105’s. Jackassery.

  5. A low-observable gunship?’ – Could see that. Though mostly not in the way the current brass see’s it. I could easily see a blended wing design with lots of room for ammo, fuel, and weapons, (and maybe a couple MOAB’s for morale boosts.)power by ducted fans mounted on external pods topside to prevent ground based IR. The underside would have actively camouflage to blend in with the sky. Basically have stealth vs your intended targets, that is vs low intensity fights. If you want to defend vs radar, just install an ASEA radar to spoof and overload the opponents radar. The no big gun / no need for ammo, its just plain stupid. If you are going against low intensity fighters, why shoot them with 100K missile, when 5$ 30mm round will do?

  6. I don’t mind the gunship being low or reduced signature, except for the fact that LO has come to stand for ‘unbelievably high cost’. In fact, what I think the Air Force should do, if they had an ounce of sense, is develop a reduced signature tactical cargo airplane to replace the C-130. They could design that with the gunship role in mind. ‘Gunship’ meaning it has guns. This idea of making it some sort of fuitcake airplane that doesn’t carry heavy loads is just stupid. Apparently any weapon that works well has to be destroyed by the idiot Pentagon bureaucrats. ‘Bring the rain.’ I’d love to be the one to make that call. We have way to few weapons where the sound alone will make the bad guys crap themselves.