US commits $80 billion to new strategic bomber to replace B52s

Iirc structural fatigue in the valiant and b52 were due to switching to low flying - estimated to be accelerated by at least a factor of 8 in the b52 case. Flying an aircraft in a regime for which it was not designed is not helpful to fatigue ( theres a suprise ). There were programs to ameliorate thus - High Stress, Pacer Plank etc. Afaik, there's been 2 crashes attributed to structural failure.




Not sure many aircraft would have landed safely as that one did after stabiliser loss.
Not all did

1964 Savage Mountain B-52 crash - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
Amazing list of crashes.

Had no idea that the vertical stabiliser was so vulnerable to shear. Thought it would be far stronger.
Think it had something to do with the tracking/crabbing undercarriage. It put huge lateral stresses on the airframe that the designers hadn't been able to anticipate and it happened quite often in the earlier models.
 
A lot was due to the switch to low level flying.
Something designed for high altitude cruising gets rather stressed when operating in low level turbulence. The Valiant had the same problem, although oddly enough we actually had a variant for low level which we never bought - see valiant B2.
 
Not sure how many tonka crashes are down to structural failure tho, usually it's mountains, each other or patriot missiles in recent memory?

Early run Typhoons had a weak vertical stab issue as well. Buffeting was far in excess of what they expected coupled with some weak manufacturing apparently.
 
A lot was due to the switch to low level flying.
Something designed for high altitude cruising gets rather stressed when operating in low level turbulence. The Valiant had the same problem, although oddly enough we actually had a variant for low level which we never bought - see valiant B2.
The problems the Valiant had were:

1. Use of DTD683 alloy for major structural elements, which turned out to be far less resistant to cracking and fatigue then expected.

2. Use of the "Safe-Life" approach to stressing parts. This was fundamentally flawed and lead to understrength components.

Add those two together and you had something that was unsafe in any conditions. The switch to low level merely meant it started killing aircrew sooner rather than later. However, you could blame the pilot in those days for unexplained mid-air breakups and with two replacement bombers ready to go it could be shuffled out of service pretty quickly.

The Hastings suffered from the same problem, but with no replacement visible they were all rebuilt at eye watering cost.
 
This strategic bomber replacement at 80 billion dollars ....... Does this mean that the US is not as technologically advanced as they would like us to believe? The bomber will be presumably designed to last at least 30 years into the future, so what of all the technology that is "just around the corner", like rail guns, large UAV's, laser weapons, satellite technology weapons, laser weapons, molecular disruptors and all that good stuff?

Not this century, perhaps?
 
Total aside here, but 50's UK must have been an amazing place to be regarding aircraft.
3 V bomber designs, fast jet projects galore - its was all happening !
 
Total aside here, but 50's UK must have been an amazing place to be regarding aircraft.
3 V bomber designs, fast jet projects galore - its was all happening !
There was an amazing book about it a read a couple of years ago. It was just nuts.
EDIT
it was called empire of the clouds.will have to beat up my dad to get my copy back!

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Total aside here, but 50's UK must have been an amazing place to be regarding aircraft.
3 V bomber designs, fast jet projects galore - its was all happening !
I've got a VHS double box set called Farnborough in the 50's/60's or similar and you're spot on. It was an incredible period in British aviation, with a new aircraft appearing seemingly every month. Sigh.......
 
Total aside here, but 50's UK must have been an amazing place to be regarding aircraft.
3 V bomber designs, fast jet projects galore - its was all happening !
Or, put another way...far too many aircraft manufacturers scrabbling as hard as they could to survive in an overcrowded market

A remarkable time indeed, but let's not romanticise it...
 

tea_siphon

Swinger
About time they started to develop their airforce really, but just throwing money at it might not be the best plan, the spams seem to have a history of throwing massive amounts of money at projects and coming out with something mediocre
 
I too have read Empire of the Clouds. IIRC, the problem was not with the aircraft designs but with our manufacturing capacity post WWII.
Whilst the manufacturers would get interest from potential overseas customers there was no way they could ever meet the demands of production capcity and the swift timelines the customers needed the kit by.
The US on the other hand had huge aircraft plants ready to roll and could meet custmer requirments.
 
Total aside here, but 50's UK must have been an amazing place to be regarding aircraft.
3 V bomber designs, fast jet projects galore - its was all happening !
The BBC did a good program recently called "cold war - hot jets" focusing on British aviation in the 50's/60's. A reckless and inspirational time imho purely from a geek standpoint.
 
This strategic bomber replacement at 80 billion dollars ....... Does this mean that the US is not as technologically advanced as they would like us to believe? The bomber will be presumably designed to last at least 30 years into the future, so what of all the technology that is "just around the corner", like rail guns, large UAV's, laser weapons, satellite technology weapons, laser weapons, molecular disruptors and all that good stuff?

Not this century, perhaps?
You forgot phasers, photon torpedoes and warp drive ;)
 

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