Date: 26 Apr 98 03:44:42 From: email@example.com (Stephen H. Westin) Organization: Program of Computer Graphics -- Cornell University References: 1 Followups: 1 2
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"Neil Gerace" <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes: > First thanks to all those in rec.aviation.military who helped me make a > list of civil-military 'equivalents'. > > Now, consider a hypothetical situation where the RAAF had the money to > replace its venerable P-3C Orion ASW planes with some new model. Say it > wanted to convert an exisiting but up-to-date airliner to fill the role. I'm not sure that makes sense. Think of the basic design goal of an airliner: get lots of people to a destination as fast and as economically as possible. Then, the design goals of an ASW plane: hang around as long as possible, looking for things that come your way. Possibly make low, slow passes over a specified area, perhaps dragging or dropping instrumentation. I don't think those goals are very similar, and airliners have developed away from anything that really fits the P-3's mission. The U.S. still relies on P-3's (I saw several parked at Norfolk last week), and they were actually in production until April of 1990. <snip> > I'm assuming such a plane would need four engines for safety during long > patrols at sea, not merely because the P-3 has four engines. Is this > right? As I recall, P-3's actually switch off two engines, feathering the props, during long missions. This saves fuel, but doesn't sound practical for a jet. The turboprop engines are ideal for the P-3's mission; staying in the air a long time, but not really going everywhere. Not only are they efficient in terms of specific thrust, but they work well at (relatively) low speeds. Its 14-hour maximum time in the air was beyond the reach of jet-powered aircraft for many years. <snip> So what aircraft could take the place of a P-3? The C-130, itself not a new design, is the only current 4-engine turboprop that comes to mind. Lockheed had proposed a P-7, but this was canceled in '89, apparently. -- -Stephen H. Westin Any information or opinions in this message are mine: they do not represent the position of Cornell University or any of its sponsors.