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Saturday, December 10, 2016

Russians in the Med

“Admiral Kuznetsov” In Western Mediterranean Sea. Su-33 & Mig-29 Take-off.

The Russians have lost a couple of jet aircraft off of their aircraft carrier that is operating in the Mediterranean Sea. They only have the one carrier. A sister ship to this one went to China, and the last of the previous class went to India. So we have three countries in Asia that their own aircraft carriers. Given the recent mishaps, they are still learning how to operate them.

The two planes that were lost off the Russian carrier were lost when the arresting cable snapped on landing. The cable snapped and the plane rolled off the flight deck. Americans don't have this problem because as soon as the aircraft touches down, the pilot gives the engines full throttle, so if the tailhook doesn't catch the cable, or the cable breaks, the aircraft can take off again. Okay, there is something funny going on here. Catching the arresting wire with the tailhook is an iffy proposition, it doesn't happen every time a plane lands. So unless the Russians have figured out a way to insure that every time an airplane touches down it will catch a wire, they need to be prepared to take off so they can go around and try again. So having a wire break should not lead to the aircraft rolling off the flight deck.

I'm thinking the loss of these aircraft is just part of the learning curve for bringing the crews up to snuff. Running an aircraft carrier successfully doesn't leave a lot of room for error, so you need to continuously practice, and practice costs money. If these other countries don't know how expensive it is to operate an aircraft carrier, they are going to find out. (It's about a million dollars a day.)

Update January 2017 replaced missing video.

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