This page is brought to
you compliments of the Kedron Wavell Services Club, Brisbane’s
Senate given permission to investigate Veterans’ Suicides and DVA
performance after Lambie motion succeeds.
JLN Independent Tasmanian Senator Jacqui Lambie has won historic
support in the Senate for a motion to
establish an independent inquiry and investigation into the
performance of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA),
especially in relation to crisis in Australian Veterans’ health and
rising suicide rates. The Inquiry will report back to the Senate by
30 March 2017.
“My message to veterans
and their families, and even members of DVA who want to blow the
whistle is: We now have a historic Senate Committee established
which will thoroughly investigate the performance of the Department
of Veterans Affairs. This will be a chance to tell the truth about
the dysfunction within DVA and help stop our veterans from killing
themselves.” said Senator Lambie.
“Veterans are killing
themselves at a rate of one every two weeks. Some reports suggest
that the number is 280 since 1999. The government is trying to cover
this scandal up through their Department of Veterans’ Affairs, which
doesn’t even keep official statistics on the numbers of veteran
That’s why last week in
Parliament I moved a motion that ensured a Senate Committee will
investigate why Australian veterans are completing suicide at such
high rates. The RSL Tasmanian state executive supported this motion."
"The Alliance of Defence
Service Organisations (ADSO) wholeheartedly supported my motion. And
I am grateful that all the Crossbench Senators, Labor and the Greens
also supported the motion."
"As you are about to see
the Liberal government tried to stop my motion and opposed it on the
voices, but were too scared to call a division.” said Senator Lambie.
HERE to read the petition put forward by Senator Lambie and also
watch the video below.
Good News - at last!!
Melbourne Cup Luncheon.
Tuesday 1st November
If you're like a
majority of us and love a little punt on Melbourne Cup Day, and
you'll be in Brisbane that day, then Kedron Wavell Services Club
could be the place for you.
As usual, they have a
fun packed day organised where you can enjoy a delicious buffet
meal, including a complimentary sparkling wine and prawn cocktail on
arrival. There will be live entertainment by ‘Chi Chi’, all the
racing on the big screen, sweeps and raffles, and fashions on the
HERE to view the menu.
Doors open from 10.30am
and the Club’s TAB will be operating. Make up a party and have a
Early bird tickets
(until 30th September) from $55 members | $65 non-members.
After 30th September from $59 members | $69 non-members.
A man comes home to find his mate
having sex with his wife,
he grabs his 22 from the cupboard and
shoots the bloke and kills him.
His wife says “carry on like that and
you’ll have no mates left”.
Increased Travel Allowances.
Travel allowances for transport, meals and accommodation under DVA’s
Repatriation Transport scheme increased from 1 July in line with the
Consumer Price Index (CPI). The intention of the Scheme is to
provide financial assistance with travelling expenses for an
entitled person and their medically required attendant, not
necessarily to reimburse the entire cost incurred. To claim
reimbursement for transport a cost must be incurred. To receive the
maximum benefit, you should travel to your closest practical health
Holders of a Gold or White Card, eligible under the Veterans’
Entitlements Act (VEA) are entitled to assistance towards travelling
expenses when attending approved treatment. The increases apply to
travel by private vehicle, as well as accommodation and meal
allowances, in respect of travel for treatment purposes or
disability and income support claims for all eligible veterans, war
widow and widowers (entitled persons).
For any queries about travel allowances contact Veterans’ Transport
Services on 1300 550 454 (for metropolitan areas) or 1800 550 454
(for country areas).
the Russian fighter plane doing a delicate solo dance at ground
level. It is even more amazing when one realizes this is a deadly
plane capable of supersonic speeds and dropping nuclear bombs and
shooting down almost any fighter plane”. ???????
I don’t know
how many times I’ve received the above email which shows this
“remarkable” Russian aircraft performing seemingly impossible
manoeuvres in front of half a dozen blokes who seem just as excited
as though they were watching a game of marbles (Click the pic to see
who sends me the email suggests it’s the real deal!! Am I the only
sceptic left in the world?? Before you send it on, just have a look
at the video:
·Why is there
no jet thrust disturbing the ground under the aircraft??
anyone seriously think people would be allowed so close and who are those blokes in blue?? (Would one of them
be the pilot of the aircraft perhaps?)
what is that model aircraft doing on the ground in one of the
send it to me anymore. It’s just a model people, but you have to
admit, whoever is doing the “flying” is actually very talented.
If people can’t control their own
then they have to start trying to
control other people’s behaviour.
Rotary “Wankel” engines
Some years ago, Mazda picked up the
rotary engine developed by German Engineer, Felix Wankel, and
after making a number of modifications, introduced it into their
cars in 1965. Over the years Mazda made many modifications and
improvements to the engine, but on Friday, 22 June 2012, the Wankel
rotary engine's last remaining and steadfast devotee, Mazda,
produced their final rotary engine in their Hiroshima plant.
The Wankel engine never really fulfilled its promises and hopes,
though over its history over 25 major car, motorcycle, tractor, and
aircraft companies, ranging from Suzuki to Rolls-Royce, were
actively researching, developing, and/or building the piston-less
The Wankel motor is one of those things that, for all its issues,
was just too pure and beautiful for engineers to ignore. With far
fewer parts than a regular reciprocating piston engine and a
visually elegant design, it's no wonder Mazda kept with it. For a
given displacement, it produces far more power than a given piston
engine, at a much smaller size and weight. It can rev faster and is
inherently smooth, since the motive force is rotational from start
to finish, not the back-and-forth hopping of a piston engine. The
down side is that Wankels are always a bit more fuel-gluttonous than
a piston engine and almost always have dirtier exhaust. Poor fuel
economy and more polluting are pretty much the only strikes you need
against you in our modern age, so the mainstream Wankel is going
Felix Wankel was a gifted and largely self-taught engineer. The
fundamental concept behind the rotary engine came to him quite
early, as he is reported to have told friends at the age of 17 he
would build a new kind of car with "a new type of engine, half
turbine, half reciprocating”. His past was checkered with periods in
Hitler Youth and the Nazi party, though he was forced out in 1932.
After his first patent in 1929 for the engine, it wasn't until after
WWII that development started in earnest, thanks to a development
deal with NSU in 1951. In 1957, an NSU engineer built the first
working Wankel motor without Wankel knowing, which caused him to
comment "you have turned my race horse into a plow mare." Like a
typical gearhead, I'm sure Wankel was imaging a powerful racing
motor instead of the practical lump made by NSU.
The NSU Spider was the first production Wankel-engined car, in 1964.
A pretty little rear-engined roadster, it was sort of like the VW
Type III convertible that was never made, with its under-trunk-floor
engine position and two luggage compartments. Later NSU created the
legendary Ro80, a beautiful rotary-engined sedan that looked 20+
years ahead of its time. Sadly, the Wankel proved to be the achilles
heel of the car, with issues with rotor-tip sealing causing some
engines to fail as early as 30,000 miles.
Attempts from the Wankel's homeland were nothing compared with the
engine's longest and greatest patron, Mazda. Starting with the
Cosmo back in 1967 (which had the first two-rotor Wankel) and
ending in 2012 with the advanced Renesis engine in the RX-8, Mazda
has built cars (and trucks) with rotary engines for 45 years, and in
that time managed to work out most of the major sealing and other
The final version of Mazda's rotary, the Renesis, developed 238 HP
out of 1.3 litres, very impressive. Less impressive is its fuel
consumption and emissions, the latter being the final, shiny coffin
nail, as the engine failed to pass the Euro 5 emissions tests. Mazda
did release a limited run of a hydrogen-based rotary engine, but
future development seems unlikely.
It's not totally gone, though. The engine's just too elegant and
simple to disappear entirely, and is finding strange and novel
niches in which to survive. Like seat belts. The seat belt emergency
pretensioner system in some Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen is actually
a tiny Wankel motor driven by an explosive charge. Wankels may also
stick around in certain niche markets, like snowmobiles, since when
they fail it's more gradual, and some power may still be generated,
for a time. This is unlike piston engines, who may throw a rod and
be done with it in a horrific moment of smoke and oil. For
snowmobiles, this is a big deal, since breaking down can mean much
more than an annoying afternoon. Much more as in lost noses and
fingers to frostbite or determined wolves. UAVs are also
experimenting with small Wankels, since their simplicity and
durability are big advantages for robot aircraft.
So, why did it fail?
Rotor sealing. This is still a problem as the engine housing
has vastly different temperatures in each separate chamber section.
The different expansion coefficients of the materials give a far
from perfect sealing. In comparison a piston engine has all four
functions of a cycle in the same chamber giving a more stable
temperature for piston rings to act against.
Apex seal lifting. Centrifugal force pushes the apex seal
onto the housing surface forming a firm seal. Gaps can develop
between the apex seal and
trochoid housing in light-load operation when imbalances in
centrifugal force and gas pressure occur. In low engine-rpm ranges,
or under low-load conditions, gas pressure in the combustion chamber
can cause the seal to lift off the surface, resulting in combustion
gas leaking into the next chamber. Mazda has identified this problem
and has developed a solution. By changing the shape of the troichoid
housing, the seals remain flush to the housing. This points to using
the engine at sustained higher revolutions in applications such as
an electric generator. In vehicles this leads to series-hybrid
applications of the engine.
Slow Combustion. The combustion is slow as the combustion
chamber is long, thin, and moving. The trailing side of the
combustion chamber naturally produces a "squeeze stream"
that prevents the flame from reaching the chamber trailing edge.
This problem is sought to be overcome by
direct injection in which fuel
is injected towards the leading edge of the combustion chamber to
minimize the amount of unburned fuel in the exhaust.
Bad fuel economy. This occurs from seals leakages, and the
'difficult shape' of combustion chamber, with poor combustion
behaviour, and bad Mean Effective Pressure at part load, low rpm.
Meeting the emissions regulations requirements sometimes mandated a
fuel/air ratio that is not the best for fuel economy. Acceleration
and deceleration as in direct drive average driving conditions also
affects fuel economy. Running the engine at a constant speed and
load eliminates poor fuel consumption.
Poor emissions. As unburnt fuel is in the exhaust stream,
emissions requirements are difficult to meet. This problem looks to
be overcome by implementing direct fuel injection into the
combustion chamber. The
Freedom Motors Rotapower Wankel engine which is not yet in
production, met the Ultra Low California emissions. The Mazda
Renesis engine, with both Intake and Exhaust Side Ports, suppressed
the loss of unburned mix to exhaust formerly induced by port
Click the video below to see why the Wankel engine was not the
success it was hoped for.
If I had a dollar for every girl that found me
unattractive, they'd eventually find me attractive.
In 1970, a very silly North Vietnamese decided to set himself up as
a sniper and fire onto a US army base. Photographer James Speed
Hensinger just happened to be on the base at the time and he
captured the US response. The Yanks first opened up with a 40mm
auto-cannon, followed by launching flares into the hills, as a pair
of M-60 machine guns in guard towers began pelting the woods with
The sniper was never found, though soldiers did discover traces of
blood when they searched the area the next day. He never came back.
Beware of business scams
impersonating the ACCC.
14 July 2016
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is warning
businesses and individuals to watch out for scam emails that claim
to be from the ACCC but in fact contain links that can infect your
computer with malware. Several businesses have reported receiving
bogus requests from the ACCC to respond to a complaint that has been
made about their business, or seek payment for an infringement
notice for breach of copyright.
Both scams encourage the recipient to find out more by either
clicking on a link disguised as a .pdf file or responding to contact
details in the email. In the first scam, the embedded link is
actually a .zip file that will download malware on to your computer
or device. The ACCC is warning people that there are scammers trying
to use the ACCC’s name to try and to steal money from businesses.
People should be on the lookout for ransomware, which is a type of
malware that freezes your computer and demands a ransom for you to
be able to access your computer again. Scammers commonly ask for
bitcoins or ask you to transfer money by wire transfer but even if
you pay the fee, there is no guarantee that your computer will be
Fortunately, no money has been reported lost from these particular
scams to Scamwatch yet. The emails are easy to spot as fakes and you
can avoid falling victim by checking the email address of the sender
before clicking on any links. Scammers have been using email
addresses such as ‘accc.govt.au’. Australian government agencies do
no use free web based email accounts like outlook.com and their
emails end with gov.au, not .govt.au. If you hover your mouse
pointer over links they will generally display the real address or
file name. Zip and .exe files are easily disguised as pdf files but
can contain malware.
Both of the scam emails circulating are simply addressed to a
non-specific ‘Business Owner’ and may contain errors. If you
unexpectedly receive an email from the ACCC, do not click on any
links or respond to contact details provided in the email. Instead,
independently source contact details for the ACCC through an
internet search or phone book.
80,000 Collingwood Fans meet at the
MCG for a "Collingwood Fans Are Not Stupid" Convention. Eddie
says, "We are all here today to prove to the world that
Collingwood fans are not stupid. Can I have a volunteer?" Dane
Swan gingerly works his way through the crowd and steps up to
the stage. Eddie asks him, "What is fifteen plus fifteen?" After
15 or 20 seconds Swan says, "Eighteen!" Obviously everyone is a
little disappointed. Then all 80,000 Collingwood Fans start
chanting, "Give Him Another Chance! Give Him Another Chance!"
Eddie says, "Well since we've gone to the trouble of getting
80,000 of you in one place and we have the world wide press and
global broadcast media here, I think we can give him another
chance." So he asks, "What is seven plus seven?" After nearly 30
seconds he eventually says, "Ninety!" Eddie is quite perplexed,
looks down and just lets out a dejected sigh - everyone is
disheartened. Swanny starts crying and the 80,000 Collingwood
fans begin to yell and wave their hands shouting, "Give Him
Another Chance! Give Him Another Chance!" Eddie, unsure whether
or not he is doing more harm than damage, eventually says, "OK!
OK! Just one more chance...What is two plus two?" Swanny closes
his eyes, and after a whole minute eventually says, "Four!"
Throughout the stadium pandemonium breaks out as all 80,000
Collingwood fans jump to their feet, wave their arms, stamp
their feet and scream... "Give Him Another Chance! Give Him
The Tasmanian Vietnam Veterans
State Memorial Bush Retreat.
What is the “Bush Retreat”?
It is a memorial to those 16 Tasmanians who served and lost their
lives in Vietnam. The building was constructed with funds from both
State and Federal Governments and was erected by veterans and
professionals who donated their time and materials to the project.
The 5 bedroom house is located at Dago Point, Interlaken, beside
Lake Sorell in the Central Highlands of Tasmania. It was opened by
Governor General Sir Phillip Bennett on the 20th January 1990. It
sleeps up to 13, has tank water, a large wood fire plus all electric
mod-cons including TV, Video and DVD player. Although there is no
mobile phone reception, there is a telephone (03) 6254 1055 for
incoming calls and emergency 000 calls.
What’s in the
“Bush Retreat” for my use?
Single bunk, 2 single mattresses, 6 single blankets, 2 pillows,
wardrobe, bedside table and lamp.
Tri bunk, double and single mattresses, 9 single blankets, 4
pillows, wardrobe, bedside table and lamp.
Tri bunk, double and single mattresses, 9 single blankets, 3
pillows, wardrobe, bedside table and lamp.
Single bunk, 2 single mattresses, 6 single blankets, 2 pillows,
wardrobe, bedside table and lamp.
Tri bunk, double and single mattresses, 9 single blankets, 3
pillows, wardrobe, bedside table and lamp.
Wheel chair friendly shower, hand basin, toilet, toilet chair,
shower chair, heater and first aid box.
Room/Kitchen – Large wood
heater, lounge suite, TV, video, DVD, dining suite, 3 fridges,
stove, sink, microwave oven, toaster, electric jug, crockery and
barbecue area – Barbecue,
table & stool assembly, fire pot and 2 freezers as ice containers.
toilet – Toilet only
Twin tub washing machine and trough
pump shed – Pump,
filter, 2 valves, axe, leaf blower with cord. Also broom, mops and
Clothes Line – Pull out type clothes line.
What is the cost?
The nightly rental cost is $40 for 2 adults plus $10 for each
additional adult. Tenants may enter from mid-day and must exit by
mid-day and are asked to use what-ever is in stock, but replace when
it runs out. Example – ensure that there are toilet rolls, sugar,
coffee, tea and washing up liquid for the next tenant.
Who can book?
Any adult who is eligible to be (you don’t have to be) a
member of the “Vietnam Veterans Association Australia” may book.
That means Vietnam Veterans, their partners, adult children and
adult grand-children. Also, any adult member of the “Peacekeepers
and Peacemakers Association” may book.
How do I book?
Bookings are made by ringing Tamara Abbott at the Tasmania Branch
RSLA on (03) 6242 8900 or email email@example.com
How do I pay?
By cheque to “Viet Vets Memorial Fund” send to Tas. RSLA, PO Box
147, NEWTOWN, TAS, 7008.
Direct debit to Viet Vets Mem. Fund, BSB 807.009, Account Number
12149527, Reference – your name.
Keys are available on showing your receipt at the following:
The RSLA Tasmania Branch, 206 Newtown Road, NEWTOWN, Hobart, TAS
7008, (03) 6242 8900
The Launceston RSL, 313 Wellington Street, LAUNCESTON SOUTH, TAS
7249, (03)6344 9584
The Devonport RSL, 18 Mac Fie Street, PO BOX 365, DEVONPORT TAS
7310. (03) 6424 2673 firstname.lastname@example.org Paul Barker.
The St Helens RSL, 35 Quail Street, ST HELENS TAS 7216, (03)
What do I need to take with me?
Bedding – Your towels, sheets and pillow slips plus favourite
pillow and doona. There are some single blankets and pillows.
Food, drinks, warm clothing for bush walking, fishing gear, a
book or DVDs.
How do I find the Bush Retreat
From Hobart – Travel North up the Midlands Highway to
Oatlands. Turn left onto Interlaken Road (C526). Keep left and
drive between the 2 lakes then turn right into Dago Point.
Follow the red roosters to the right and you are there.
From Launceston – Travel South down the Midlands Highway
to Tunbridge. Turn right up the Tunbridge Tier on (C526) until
you are between Lake Sorell and Lake Crescent. Turn right about
2km past the connecting channel into Dago Point. Drive a few
hundred meters, then follow the red roosters to the right and
you are there.
From Devonport – Travel Highway 1 to Deloraine, then (A5)
along the Western shore of Great Lake to Steppes. Turn left onto
(C527) to Interlaken. Turn left into Dago Point, then right
following the red roosters and you are there.
If you are staying at the “Retreat” in the Winter, you may get lots
of SNOW, it could be very cold so be prepared (I can vouch for that
- tb). Don’t forget your CHAINS and a little extra food and
medication, just in case you get snowed in. Lake Sorell is closed
for Carp eradication, but Lake Crescent has large trout in season
and the Great Lake is open all year round, so fishing gear could be
handy - but you'll need a license.
On arrival process of unlocking:
Using the orange key, unlock the meter box and turn the power on
using both switches.
Using the blue and the yellow key unlock the end and back doors,
checking that the door will not lock you out accidentally when
Using keys 5, 6 and 7 unlock the outside toilet, the water pump
shed and the laundry.
In the PUMP shed, turn the blue gate valve and black circular
handled valve behind the door on, then switch the pump on.
Using the red and green keys, unlock the large wood containers.
Someone may have the fire alight by now.
Clean the barbecue if you have used it.
Pack your bedding and tidy beds and bedrooms.
Check under beds, in cupboards and drawers.
Pack up your food and clothing.
As fridges will be switched off, please remove food.
Clean the toilets, shower and hand basin.
Check and clean the oven, stove, microwave oven, refrigerator,
table and kitchen benches.
Mop the vinyl areas, vacuum the carpet and sweep around the fire
Ensure that the fire is safe and that there are sticks and wood
ready for the next tenant. If the fire is cold, please set the
fire for the next tenant.
Check that all windows are closed and locked. The sliding glass
door is locked at the top with the purple key.
The last one out to check that all 6 doors and containers are
locked, power is turned off and fuse box is locked.
If you like the bush and you’re looking for somewhere different to
spend a few days that won’t break the bank, this would be ideal.
The people who lived in the
retirement village had small apartments but they all ate at a
central cafeteria. One morning one of the residents didn't show
up for breakfast so my wife went upstairs and knocked on his
door to see if everything was OK. She could hear him through the
door and he said that he was running late and would be down
shortly so she went back to the dining area.
An hour later he still hadn't arrived
so she went back up towards his room and she found him on the
stairs. He was coming down the stairs but was having a hell of
time. He had a death grip on the hand rail and seemed to have
trouble getting his legs to work right. She told him she was
going to call an ambulance but he told her no, he wasn't in any
pain and just wanted to have his breakfast. So she helped him
the rest of the way down the stairs and he had his breakfast.
When he tried to return to his room
he was completely unable to get up even the first step so they
called an ambulance for him. A couple hours later she called the
hospital to see how he was doing. The receptionist there said he
was fine, he just had both of his legs in one leg of his boxer
If you’re travelling overseas in the near future, there are a few
things you should do before you go. Number one, two and three is to
take out travel insurance.
If you get sick or break something overseas, you could firstly be up
for huge buckets of money and secondly, depending on where you are,
could be under the care of some doubtful (to say it nicely) medical
practitioners. Travel insurance is a must.
Next thing you should do is study to where you’re going. You should
know the financial, communication, and transport facilities
available in the country to where you’re going well before you climb
aboard the freedom bird. Luckily, 1Cover has done all that for you,
and although we have no agreement with them, we suggest you check
out their tips for travel overseas.
if you want a quote for travel insurance, check them out
Intentionally crashing a Boeing –
what did we learn?
On the 1st December, 1984 a remotely piloted Boeing 720,
loaded with specially formulated anti-misting Jet A, was
intentionally crashed at Edwards Air Force Base to determine if the
fuel would preclude or suppress a post-crash fire long enough for
occupants to escape. It was a bold but ill-conceived experiment that
went up in smoke.
In addition to the anti-misting kerosene (AMK) evaluation, the
controlled crash also provided data on how passenger seats and other
structures performed in such situations. Instrumented dummies were
seated in the cabin to assess acceleration forces and cameras
documented fire propagation and how well other fixtures held up. It
was well planned and carefully rehearsed over four years including
multiple remotely-piloted approaches to 150 feet above the ground,
16 of which included engines running on anti-misting kerosene.
Engines had to be modified with degraders to chop up the AMK’s long
molecules so fuel would flow reliably into combustion chambers and
burn like regular Jet A. Proving flights were a cautious, step by
step process, incrementally feeding the AMK from a few tanks to a
few engines to be sure engines ran properly.
Airlines were deeply sceptical about the whole idea and very
concerned about its costs and practicality. Going forward with such
a program meant, at the very least, adding more steps to fuel
refining and costly fleet-wide fuel system retrofitting to
accommodate the AMK’s long fuel molecules. All of this to address
those extremely rare events where suppressing or delaying a
post-crash fire would allow passengers to escape in an otherwise
The industry view was that the money could be better spent on
accident prevention rather than adding costly mechanical complexity
to prevent what might possibly happen in rare post-crash events.
Instead airlines advocated better automation, cockpit displays and
warning systems as a better use for the money. More on this later.
diligently on the project, methodically fixing remote control bugs
and refining control techniques to where they were confident the old
Boeing could be flown wings level into eight fixed barriers designed
to slice open fuel tanks but leave the fuselage intact.
Finally, with all details complete, the crash date was set. Word
went out to the airlines, manufacturers and other interested
industry groups to come see the fruits of NASA’s efforts. And so,
everyone gathered at Edwards Air Force Base on that cool December
morning several miles from the Rogers Dry Lake runway where NASA ’s
remotely controlled Boeing 720 loaded with 76,000 pounds of
anti-misting kerosene would end its last flight. The plane lifted
off, retracted its landing gear, climbed to 2300 feet then banked
around and lined up to land wheels up on the spiked runway. We
watched through binoculars as the 720 began its descent on a
slightly steeper than normal 3.8 degree descent toward the runway.
Also present was Alex Ogston, an old timer British chemical engineer
who worked for Standard Oil in World War II helping develop the 100
octane gasoline that contributed to the Spitfire’s success in
besting the Germans in the Battle of Britain.
Ogston chatted about those long ago times and related how
Messerschmitt 109s had to make do with 87 octane gas while the
Brits’ 100 octane fuel allowed higher manifold pressure and more
power for their Merlin engines, giving them a narrow edge over their
adversaries. Ogston was incredulous about what he said was “NASA’s
silly effort to keep jet fuel from burning.”
Nearing touchdown the Boeing banked left and right then struck the
ground slightly left wing down. Immediately a monstrous fireball
erupted as the plane slid along. Ogston was right. Liberating tons
of jet fuel in the presence of an ignition source will result in a
large fire ball. Fire fighting vehicles arriving on the scene were
no match for the conflagration and the plane burned for over an hour
in spite of their efforts. The 720’s
wing wobbling Dutch roll (common in swept wing aircraft) was at
the root of the pilot’s control problems. Seeing that a wings level
touchdown was doubtful, the remote pilot spooled up the engines
apparently trying to go around but couldn’t complete the manoeuvre
in time. The plane struck the ground left wing down in a left skid
at full thrust instead of being at idle for landing. It then slid
into the barriers, one of which sliced through the number 3 engine
and passenger cabin, providing a flame path into the fuselage. The
botched experiment highlighted the fallacy of carefully engineering
a crash scenario to serve as the basis for retooling airliner fuel
systems and reformulating jet fuel specifications.
The fireball and post-crash analysis dramatically confirmed industry
scepticism about AMK, and pointed up its shortcomings as a viable
safety enhancement in the real world. The effort was abandoned. But
it wasn’t all for naught. Analysis of fire propagation in the cabin
led to new standards for fire blocking materials in passenger seats
and highlighted the need for faster flight recorder data sampling
The FAA estimated that 25 to 28 of the cabin’s 113 occupants might
have been able to exit the cabin before dense black smoke completely
obscured visibility. Escape time varied from five seconds in the
forward cabin to 20 seconds further back. The FAA’s survivability
estimates are debatable in such a fiery accident scenario because
passengers often wear clothing and footwear providing almost no
bodily protection and some seem only marginally able to manoeuvre
into and out of seats even in normal circumstances.
In contrast to that long ago AMK experiment, consider how today’s
well engineered terrain awareness warning systems (TAWS), also known
as enhanced ground proximity warning systems or EGPWS, have largely
prevented the kind of accidents AMK was intended to make survivable.
Enhanced ground prox systems were first installed in air carrier
jets in 1997 and are now in over 55,000 airliners, corporate jets,
turboprops, helicopters, business aircraft and military transport
aircraft around the world. TAWS installations can include a
worldwide terrain and obstruction database and cover all airports
with paved runways 2200 feet and longer, although some systems are
less inclusive depending on user needs.
These warnings did more for safety than the fanciest fuel projects.
TAWS warns pilots of terrain and obstructions with visual and audio
alerts plus, on some aircraft, color-coded situational awareness
terrain displays. TAWS also warns of flight dangerously close to
terrain, excessive bank angle, excessive deviations from the ILS
glideslope or excessive deviations from the approach descent path –
as well as descents after take-off. Since EGPWS was introduced 20
years ago, the airline hull loss rate for Western built airliners
has decreased about 2.5 times.
What TAWS can’t do is convince overly headstrong pilots to heed
example, on May 9, 2012, a brand new SU95-100 equipped with TAWS
flew into a mountainside during a demonstration flight in IMC while
the pilot in command listened to “terrain” warnings and finally,
“pull-up” warnings for 36 seconds before impact. To better
understand where and under what circumstances significant airliner
flightpath deviations occur, Honeywell analysed five years of escape
activations (2011 through 2015) on glass cockpit airliners equipped
with their TAWS. There were 224 final approach premature descent
events extracted from about 24.38 million flight legs operated
around the world. None were reported by pilots and air traffic
controllers. The event data covered the period 20 seconds before the
alert through 10 seconds after and were de-identified so that they
only could be used for safety analysis.
How many of these premature descents would have ended in an
undershoot accident is impossible to know but it’s comforting to
know TAWS is doing its job around the world by alerting pilots in a
manner that results in a successful avoidance manoeuvre. And because
thoughtful regulators acknowledged the impracticality of AMK as a
safety enhancer, we’re not saddled with an unnecessary, unworkable
fuel additive which would neither prevent accidents nor materially
increase post-accident survivability.
Independent history of Vietnam War medical legacies is under
Work has commenced
on an independent history that will document and analyse the
medical legacies of the Vietnam War. The volume, commissioned by
the Council of the Australian War Memorial, will be written by
Dr Peter Yule, a research f
Dr Yule said the
new volume would examine the complete range of medical issues
experienced by Australian veterans, with particular focus on
post-traumatic stress disorder and the health effects of
exposure to herbicides. Dr Yule also said that it is essential
to find out about the health concerns of veterans by talking
with the veterans themselves. He emphasised that the voice of
the veterans must be heard.
Director of the
Australian War Memorial Dr Brendan Nelson said the history would
be informed by 30 years of new knowledge and interviews with
Vietnam War veterans. “This important project will enable
greater understanding of the implications for those Australians
who served in the Vietnam War.
We cannot rewrite
history, but a generation on, informed by new knowledge and a
deeper understanding, we can bring a sense of informed justice
and meaning to veterans still suffering.” He added that the
Memorial has a strong reputation for producing authoritative
“Dr Yule brings a
level of academic rigour that a project like this deserves. His
work as an independent historian is extensive, and he has
written or edited some 19 books as well as numerous articles and
other publications,” said Dr Nelson.
four-year project, Dr Yule and a team of researchers will
undertake interviews with a wide cross-section of Vietnam
veterans. Existing research and medical studies will also be
reviewed as part of the project.
manuscript is expected to be completed by the end of 2019, with
publication planned for 2020.