Health & Safety

September 20, 2013

Edwards T-38 aircrew prep for new ejection seat upgrade

Tags:
Jet Fabara
412th TW Public Affairs

Edwards is working to install new ejection seats in its T-38 fleet in order to increase the overall safety of the training aircraft.

For test pilots at Edwards, their long-time trainer airframe, the T-38 Talon, is receiving an upgrade that is set to ensure the safety of T-38 aircrew now and well into the future.

The upgraded ejection seat, known as the Martin-Baker Mk US16T, brings added safety features that were not previously available.

“We have an entirely new ejection seat system for the T-38,” said Maj. Jon Appelt, 370th Flight Test Squadron training officer. “The biggest benefit of this new seat is the expanded ejection envelope which increases aircrew survivability. This includes the ability to successfully eject in a zero airspeed and zero altitude situation as well as improving survivability in the high altitude and high airspeed regime.”

In addition to the zero-zero seat feature, Appelt mentioned the seat would include an inter-seat sequencing system, which allows one of the two aircrew members to start the ejection sequence for both aircrew members and sequences the ejections to avoid seat to seat interference.

“Potential seat to seat interference during the ejection process is a serious problem with the old system, and now with the new inter-seat sequencing system, the seats are automatically de-conflicted during the ejection, avoiding this problem,” added Appelt. “Once the center ejection handle is pulled, the aft seat will always eject first, followed by the front seat, which reduces the possibility of both aircrew members colliding in-flight.”

In conjunction with the inter-sequencing system is the seat’s leg restraint system, which provides two upper and lower leg garters attached to the aircrew member’s legs.

The new seat, the Mk US16T by Martin-Baker, will replace the old Northrop Grumman seat.

“This feature draws the pilot’s legs in and retains them in a position, clear of obstacles, until man-seat separation occurs,” said Master Sgt. David Buczynski, 412th Operations Support Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment Quality Assurance. “The leg lines are connected to the inner pistons of the main beam assembly, which stays with the aircraft after ejection.”

Since the new seat incorporates a parachute system built into the seat just like the ACES II system on an F-16, Buczynski said the aircrew member will no longer have to carry a 50-pound, back-style parachute out to the aircraft.

“Added features of this ejection seat include the use of drogue chute stabilization, an automatic chute deployment, automatic man-seat separation and a manual override system, in the event of automatic and backup system failure,” added Appelt.

Although the new integration is ongoing, Appelt said aircrews will still be required to undergo the appropriate training before flying.

“Everybody flying in the new seat will be required to train on the new seat, which involves 30 to 45 minutes of ground training and about 30 minutes of training at the aircraft,” Appelt said. “Once the modular training seat system is available, aircrews will be able to use the system as a fundamental training device.”

The integration commenced in early July and, at this point, should end by mid-October, according to Appelt.

“Obviously, it will take a while to take all these T-38s through the modification process, but we’re near the tail-end of the mod process. There are contractors working at Vance Air Force Base, Calif., which allows us to mod one jet per week, but training has to be accomplished on both airframe ejection seats nonetheless,” said Appelt.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs August 21. 2015

Women’s Equality Day Luncheon Be sure to reserve your seat for the upcoming Womenís Equality Day Luncheon! The guest speaker is Juliana de Beers, owner of J.B. Whitney & Associates, who also teaches communication courses at Edwards. Additionally, Jon Ghent from Lockheed Martin will present a short speech on ìWomen in STEM.î Aug. 26 has...
 
 

Personnel Briefs August 21, 2015

Undergrad flying training applications due in November The 2016 Air Force Undergraduate Flying Training selection board will convene Jan. 25-28 to select applicants for 2016-2017 pilot, remotely piloted aircraft, combat systems officer and air battle manager training opportunities. Eligible active duty officers must apply by Nov. 20 and selection results will be released in February...
 
 
history-run

Run with History deadline Sept. 10

Edward’s AFB History Fact: Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier Oct. 14, 1947, here at our very own Edwards AFB. He flew the X-1 at Mach 1.07 at an altitude of 45,000 ft. Most will know this fact, but did you know that tw...
 

 

Seed bugs invade Edwards

During the past weeks Edwards has once again fallen prey to Mother Nature’s hand and has been invaded by Melacoryphus lateralis — †the Seed bug. Misty Hailstone, 412th Civil Engineering Group, Environmental Management biologist, identified the species, which was confirmed by an entomologist. The Seed bug does not sting or bite and is not known...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber

Annual orientation trains new key spouses

Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber The Airman and Family Readiness Center hosted an annual Key Spouse Program Orientation Aug. 18 for newly appointed and returning Key Spouses. The Airman and Family Readiness Center hosted a...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph

JSF ITF reaches historic sortie milestone at lightning speed

Lockheed Martin photograph During the month of July, the Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Test Force flew 76 sorties, making it a first for the ITF involving a new monthly flying record. The Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Test ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>