OT Plane Crash because of Birds

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Off Topic, but hardware related.
It's been all over the news about the plane that crashed into a river in (I think) New York. They said it was caused by birds flying into the engine. Then they showed a report of the number of bird caused plane accidents and deaths each year. From 1990 to 2007 there were almost 80,000 accidents caused by birds. There have been numerous deaths and millions of dollars of damages.
OK, looking at the engines they showed on tv, I immediately thought ***Why dont they put some sort of screening over the engine*** It would only seem like a couple hundred dollars worth of hardware cloth would solve the problem. Why dont they think of simple solutions like this?
Jim
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I have to imagine it has been thought of. I also have to imagine it has to be a problem. Air flow over the screen at 600 mph can be a problem. Resistance and the support needed for the screen would be too. Not to mention that some stuff that is normally sucked through the engine could block the screen and cause even bigger problems.
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They were also worried about icing and deicing. You'd have to almost put the deicer directly into the engine itself and that can't be a good thing. Also, when you look at the forces involved in hitting a large goose at take off speeds or higher, you run out of materials that make any sense very quickly.
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the incredible vacuum pull of such an engine would require something a LOT stronger than hardware cloth,and it wuold restrict airflow.
some Soviet fighter jets use doors that close over the normal intakes to prevent ingesting debris on the runway,and have auxiliary intake doors on the top of the engine cowling. Mig-29 does this,IIRC. Except this still would not have worked in this incident,as the geese were ingested at higher altitudes when the doors would have been open.
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Jim Yanik
jyanik
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When I worked with flight engines at Pratt and Whitney, all flight engines had anti-icing features built into the blades (some of the compressor blades were hollow and hot air circulated through them). This solved the engine icing problem. The icing problem is with the aircraft body itself.
We would NEVER put any "thing" in front of the engine for fear of ingesting the "thing" and destroying the engine. A structure like a screen and its supports has the potential for completely destroying any jet engine.
Bird strikes are a very common event, particularly around airports. Engines are designed to absorb bird strikes and tested against bird strikes. At Pratt we had a steam powered catapult "chicken gun" which was used to fire chickens into the inlet of a jet in a test stand. The chicken was shot in at about 300 mph, and the engine was expected to keep on running at power. For the design to be certified the engine model had to pass this test.
I do not recall any requirement for tests with multiple chickens.
In the very early days (say around 1955) the chicken was alive. After the SPCA etc. threw a hissy fit the test was changed so that the chicken was killed before being shot into the engine. No one wanted us to scare the chicken to death.
HTH,
EJ in NJ
Kurt Ullman wrote:

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on 1/22/2009 7:35 AM (ET) Ernie Willson wrote the following:

Don't they just go to the supermarket and buy chickens from the butcher?
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Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Nah. In order to be used, they have to mil-spec chickens (g).
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willshak wrote:

At Pratt we had a steam powered catapult "chicken gun" which

I believe the do now. Back in the 50's it was as easy to get a live chicken as a plucked and cleaned one. The live chicken is closer to a real bird strike than a cleaned one, however, I doubt that the missing viscera and feathers affects the effects on the engine.
BTW there is a "spec" chicken. IIRC the spec says that the chicken must be thoroughly thawed, it must hit the engine inlet at or above a certain velocity, and it must be heavier than a stated minimum weight.
EJ in NJ

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wrote:

The airflow into the intake on a jet engine is significantly higher than the airspeed of the plane - and when, not if, the metal screen fractured and went through the jet it will do a LOT more damage than the birds!!!
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It doesn't work. When you get metal thick enough and hefty enough to withstand that mph of wind, it restricts air intake. And then, a full sized Canadian honker, which I believe these were, could go right through there at that speed anyway.
I'm sure that they've studied it to death. They have studied much lesser problems and spent much more on them.
As an aside, propane cannons were being used to scare birds in airports and berry farms until the tree huggers (and nearby residents) stopped it.
To some poor deluded individuals, geese are more important than humans. And in many sad cases, they are.
Steve
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wrote:

Up here in Ontario we call them honkers "flying dogs" and a large number are no longer migratory - they stick around all winter. Time to open a hunting season on them again to get the numbers in line.
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On Fri, 16 Jan 2009 14:01:07 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Sorry, geese are more important than humans. Remember the days of Arafat? The cats were more important than the Israeli children Arafat's men were killing!
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wrote:

That statement makes no sense at all. Scaring them is far less inhumane than sucking them into a jet engine. I did not mention this in my original message but the thought did come to mind about harming/killing birds in addition to the plane damage and human lives lost. It's a bad situation all the way, and with all the technology we have these days, you'd think they would have developed something by now to keep these birds from getting sucked into the engines.
They sell these whistle devices to put on cars to scare deer away, isn't there some way to do something like that to get the birds away from the planes?
I know what propane cannons are, I heard them once, and they are sort of annoying, but why not just fire them before a plane takes off, and not all day long.
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You mean every 6 minutes? or at some airports every 3.5?
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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Last month the FAA reduced the number of flights arriving/departing Laguardia to a max of 71 per hour. That's one landing or takeoff every 51 seconds.
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-snip-

I'm not a jet mechanic- but icing and turbulence come to mind immediately. Then weight considerations.
Jim
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Or how about a larger number of smaller birds that would have been ingested by an engine with the engine still running, but with a screen the screen gets clogged stalling the engine.
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If the screen failed during a bird strike, some of it would end up in the engine as well. Not good.
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In article

I don't know. If it failed I would think the bird would have taken out the engine. I don't know that pieces from the screen would make any difference in real life situations.
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on 1/16/2009 5:51 AM (ET) Jimw wrote the following:

In the Hudson River by NYC. It is considered a crash, but because of the expertise of the pilot, it was more of a landing in the water.

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Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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