Problemas com o C130J...

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Problemas com o C130J...
« em: Julho 26, 2004, 12:40:52 pm »
Humm...
Dá que pensar, não?


"POGO Statement on C-130J Inspector General Audit
 
 
(Source: Project On Government Oversight – POGO; issued July 23, 2004)
 
 
 An audit released today by the Pentagon's Inspector General concluded that, since 1999, the U.S. Air Force has purchased 50 new C-130J transport aircraft - an upgraded version of the decades-old Hercules prop cargo airlifter - despite a host of deficiencies that make the aircraft unable to perform its missions.  
 
The Pentagon's audit is the first in-depth government study of the C-130J and explores the reasons why the aircraft is overpriced and why many of the estimated 50 C-130Js delivered by manufacturer Lockheed Martin primarily to Air Force units are problem-plagued.  
 
"This is yet another sad chapter in the history of bad Pentagon weapons systems acquisitions," said POGO Senior Defense Investigator Eric Miller. "For years, the Air Force has known it was paying too much for an aircraft that doesn't do what it's supposed to. Yet it has turned a blind eye."  
 
"The air crews who have to fly these aircraft should be very angry. They've been betrayed by the very government that should be ensuring that the weapons they receive are safe and effective," Miller continued.  
 
Some of the deficiencies that the audit alluded to include:  
 
--The aircraft's six-blade propeller becomes pitted and delaminates (layers of composite material separate) in severe weather conditions ranging from heavy rain to sleet, a condition that requires either repair or blade replacement. As a result, some of the aircraft received by the Air Force are being used only for training missions and are not considered combat ready;  
 
--Several of the aircraft delivered to an Air Force reserve unit in Biloxi, Mississippi intended to be "Hurricane Hunters" have been unable to perform missions that, by their very nature require flying in bad weather. The reason: The above-mentioned propeller problems, and radar and data transmission systems that are not working properly;  
 
--One of the aircraft's selling points over the old C-130H model is that the crew size can be reduced from five to three - two pilots and a loadmaster - making it cheaper to operate. This has yet to be proven in testing, and on most test and training flights a fourth crew member is traveling in the cockpit;  
 
 
--Although the aircraft has been in production since 1997, the new U.S. model has not yet been certified to conduct air-drop operations, one of the aircraft's most basic missions;  
 
 
The C-130J is believed to be the only aircraft ever to be designated a "commercial item" - a process intended to make acquisition of true commercial items such as computers, office equipment, and automobiles that can be purchased in the everyday marketplace easier - but in this case, however, the designation reduces oversight and transparency. The Inspector General audit concludes that the aircraft does not meet the conditions for a commercial designation.  
 
The audit also said that despite the failings attributed to the new C-130J models, the Air Force has already paid Lockheed Martin more than 99 percent of its contracted price. "As a result, the government fielded C-130J aircraft that cannot perform their intended mission, which forces the users to incur additional operations and maintenance costs to operate and maintain older C-130 mission-capable aircraft because the C-130J aircraft can be used only for training," the audit concluded.  
 
A full copy of the Inspector General audit, "Acquisition: Contracting for and Performance of the C-130J Aircraft," can be viewed at the I.G. web site, http://www.dodig.osd.mil .  
 
 
POGO investigates, exposes, and seeks to remedy systemic abuses of power, mismanagement, and subservience by the federal government to powerful special interests. Founded in 1981, POGO is a politically-independent, nonprofit watchdog that strives to promote a government that is accountable to the citizenry. "
Ai de ti Lusitânia, que dominarás em todas as nações...
 

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Moi

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« Responder #1 em: Julho 27, 2004, 11:33:06 am »
:shock:
Realmente muito interessante...

Não sei se hei-de de rir ou de chorar...
 

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JNSA

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« Responder #2 em: Julho 27, 2004, 01:08:11 pm »
Realmente é estranho que o construtor tenha deixado passar defeitos destes, particularmente a questão das pás das hélices. Se não resolverem isto depressa, o A400M pode vir a ter um reforço das encomendas...

Mas há algo que acho curisoso - o Reino Unido também usa os C-130J e nunca vi nenhuma notícia semelhante da parte deles (e eles têm condições climatéricas bastante más...)
 

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Ricardo Nunes

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« Responder #3 em: Julho 27, 2004, 05:11:28 pm »
Citação de: "JNSA"
Realmente é estranho que o construtor tenha deixado passar defeitos destes, particularmente a questão das pás das hélices. Se não resolverem isto depressa, o A400M pode vir a ter um reforço das encomendas...

Mas há algo que acho curisoso - o Reino Unido também usa os C-130J e nunca vi nenhuma notícia semelhante da parte deles (e eles têm condições climatéricas bastante más...)


Exacto. É estranho que nem a Inglaterra nem a Itália ou a Dinamarca tenham anunciado o mesmo tipo de problemas. Por outro lado também é verdade que estes são utilizadores mais recentes do modelo J.
Ricardo Nunes
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Spectral

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« Responder #4 em: Julho 27, 2004, 09:16:13 pm »
Citar
-Several of the aircraft delivered to an Air Force reserve unit in Biloxi, Mississippi intended to be "Hurricane Hunters" have been unable to perform missions that, by their very nature require flying in bad weather. The reason: The above-mentioned propeller problems, and radar and data transmission systems that are not working properly;

Já vi rumores que esta negócio dos "Hurricane Hunters" foi uma grande negociata... Os aviões foram comprados expressamente para essa missão, mas durante vários o equipamento específico para ela não foi entregue. E nessa altura a USAF não tinha necessidade de C-130s novos, mas lá ficaram com estes Js, que entraram pela "porta do cavalo".

Citar
Report: $2.6 billion spent on subpar planes
Pentagon investigators scrutinize Air Force purchases

The Associated Press
Updated: 5:39 p.m. ET July 23, 2004

WASHINGTON - The Air Force has spent $2.6 billion to buy 50 planes that do not meet the military’s requirements and cannot be flown in combat zones, Defense Department investigators reported Friday.

The Air Force has continued to order more C-130J planes even though the contractor, Lockheed Martin, has not delivered one that met requirements in the eight years since the program began, the report said.

Problems with the propeller-driven cargo planes include faulty computer and diagnostic systems and inadequate defense measures, the Defense Department’s Office of Inspector General concluded. So far, none of the planes has been cleared for some of their primary missions: dropping troops and cargo into war zones and flying in conditions that require the crew to wear night-vision goggles.

The inspector general’s report concluded that Air Force and Defense Department officials mismanaged the program, requiring millions of dollars in upgrades and thousands of hours of work to make the planes capable of performing as well as the aging models they were supposed to replace.

Air Force disputes findings
The Air Force strongly denied the report’s conclusions.

Marvin Sambur, the Air Force’s top acquisition official, wrote to the investigators that the program was within its cost, schedule and contract guidelines. Lockheed Martin has started delivering planes that meet Air Force specifications, and the necessary upgrades have either been completed or scheduled, Sambur wrote.

“While some of the facts presented in the DOD/IG report are accurate, the findings and conclusions ascribed to these facts cannot be supported,” Sambur wrote. “The Air Force fully endorses the C-130J program.”

Jeff Rhodes, a spokesman for Lockheed Martin, said Friday that the company agreed with the Air Force.

“The Air Force, ultimately the end user who is flying the aircraft, also says that the C-130J program is meeting cost, schedule, contract and regulatory commitments,” Rhodes said in an e-mail statement to The Associated Press.

Two Air Force squadrons have not been able to perform their missions for more than four years because they have only C-130Js, the report said. The 815th Air Squadron at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., and the 135th Airlift Squadron of the Maryland Air National Guard are supposed to drop troops and supplies into hostile areas.

Five other Air Force and Marine units have the C-130J planes but use older C-130s to perform their missions, the report said.

Citar
washingtonpost.com > Nation > National Security > Military

Air Force Faulted on 50-Plane Purchase
Transport Craft Fail Key Readiness Tests

By R. Jeffrey Smith
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, July 24, 2004; Page A01

The Air Force spent $2.6 billion to buy 50 transport planes that do not meet the military's requirements, preventing squadrons based in six states from being fully prepared for their missions in the Middle East and elsewhere, the office of the Defense Department's inspector general disclosed yesterday.

After conducting a lengthy investigation set off by a whistle-blower's phone call, the inspector general's office concluded that the Air Force used an inappropriate procedure to buy the C-130J transport planes from Lockheed Martin Corp. and then mismanaged its production. It also said that senior Defense Department weapons-acquisition officials failed to provide the program with "effective oversight."

The 34-page report from the inspector general's office is its second major critique this year of the Air Force's top acquisitions official, Marvin R. Sambur. In April, Joseph E. Schmitz, the Pentagon's inspector general, accused Sambur's office of mismanaging contract negotiations for the production of a refueling aircraft derived from the Boeing 767. Schmitz said the Air Force had circumvented the required procedures to sign a contract costing from hundreds of millions to several billions of dollars more than necessary.

A classified paragraph in the April report said the Boeing 767 program shared "the same unsound acquisition and procurement practices that are currently evident in the C-130J program."

Sambur, in a statement appended to the new report, said that the C-130J program is "properly managed," the manufacturer is meeting its delivery schedule and the planes have been cleared to drop equipment over land and water and to conduct medical evacuations. The planes will soon be able to perform other missions, including airdrops of troops and heavy equipment, he said.

Other military officials confirmed yesterday that the planes have not passed key readiness tests, and so no C-130J has been used as planned by the Air Force Reserve, the Air National Guard or the Marine Corps in combat zones or military assaults. Specially modified versions have also not been approved for psychological operations and electronic warfare or for monitoring hurricanes.

That means that two squadrons in Mississippi -- as well as others in California, Rhode Island, Maryland, North Carolina and Pennsylvania -- are either relying on a dwindling number of older planes to assist the military's Central Command or are unable to carry out their missions at all, according to the report, signed by Assistant Inspector General Mary L. Ugone.

Air Force and reserve officials said yesterday that pilots are training for these functions and that the planes may be ready for more missions within the next year or so. Lt. Col. Guy Walsh, commander of the 175th Wing of the Maryland National Guard in Baltimore, confirmed that the C-130J transport planes that the wing has had since 1999 or 2000 are still not rated as mission-ready and are undergoing modifications at their base. But he said that "the progress I've seen has been tremendous."

Maj. Wayne Bunker of the Marine Corps Aerial Refueler and Transport Squadron 252, based in Cherry Point, N.C., said he has a "favorable" attitude toward the dozen new C-130Js that have been based there for the past 18 months. But, he said, that "it's not desirable" to be unable to use them operationally, and that making the transition from an older squadron has been burdensome. The aerial refueling pod on the C-130Js never worked, he said, forcing mechanics to pull the pods off older planes and to retrofit them onto the new ones.

An Air Force spokeswoman declined to comment. But Lockheed spokesman Joe Stout said in a written statement that the C-130J program is meeting cost, schedule and contracting commitments and that the company supports the written comments of Sambur. He also noted that Australian, British and Italian military pilots have flown the plane into Iraq and Afghanistan.

The C-130J was conceived by Lockheed in the mid-1990s as a commercial aircraft and was sold to the Air Force as an "off-the-shelf" plane requiring minimal modifications for military use. But Lockheed has not sold a single one of the propeller-driven planes to a commercial user, and the purchase price of a basic plane has risen steadily from $33.9 million in 1995 to at least $62 million in 2004.

The planes are undergoing a fourth set of modifications and, as of the end of 2003, had 33 outstanding deficiencies considered capable of causing "death, severe injury or illness, major loss of equipment or systems, or directly restrict[ing] combat or operational readiness," according to the inspector general's report. Congress has approved spending $4 billion for the planes, and the entire program is likely to cost more than $7.5 billion.

Under Pentagon contracting rules, commercial-style acquisition relieves contractors of the obligation to furnish cost and pricing data to military auditors. It also means Pentagon reviews of the production are truncated, and it enables contractors to be paid -- often in full -- for weapons systems before they have been tested to ensure that they meet combat needs.

In eight years, the inspector general's report said, "not one C-130J delivered aircraft was fully compliant with the contract specification. . . . The Air Force did not properly manage the program." It cited the fact that Sambur's office paid Lockheed "almost the full price" for every deficient plane and approved a new multiyear contract in March 2003 despite the absence of a "stable design."

"It's pretty outrageous," said Eric Miller, an analyst at the Project on Government Oversight, a nonpartisan research group that has studied the C-130J program. "Cooperation with a defense contractor is one thing, but turning a blind eye to inferior workmanship is another. . . . It makes you wonder if anybody cares or is accountable."
I hope that you accept Nature as It is - absurd.

R.P. Feynman
 

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« Responder #5 em: Julho 27, 2004, 09:18:30 pm »
Parece que as forças armadas dos EUA estão numa balbúrdia devido ao excesso de fartura e impunidade de outros...
Ai de ti Lusitânia, que dominarás em todas as nações...
 

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fgomes

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« Responder #6 em: Julho 27, 2004, 09:30:38 pm »
Tenho família nos EUA que me diz o pior possível da indústria de defesa americana. Com as fusões e aquisições que se deram após o fim da guerra fria, deixou simplesmente de haver concorrência, em muitas áreas, e os resultados estão à vista. Por outro lado também desconfiam muito da eficácia de muitos sistemas de armas made in U.S.A. e acham que estas indústrias estão a seguir o mesmo caminho da indústria automóvel americana nos anos 70, ou seja completa incapacidade de inovar e de produzir modelos competitivos.
 

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« Responder #7 em: Julho 28, 2004, 11:08:11 pm »
oops...
« Última modificação: Julho 28, 2004, 11:09:24 pm por Luso »
Ai de ti Lusitânia, que dominarás em todas as nações...
 

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« Responder #8 em: Julho 28, 2004, 11:08:29 pm »
de

http://www.sftt.org/cgi-bin/csNews/csNe ... 2189205301

 
 DefenseWatch "The Voice of the Grunt"  
07-28-2004

U.S. C-130Js Are Not Combat Ready


By Paul Connors


More than eight years after the U.S. Air Force issued the initial contracts to procure the new and upgraded C-130J from Lockheed Martin, none of the aircraft now in use by have been certified for combat or other operational missions.

The Department of Defense Inspector General, in a review of the service’s oversight of the C-130J program obtained by several news media organizations last week, slammed the Air Force for poor management of what was supposed to be a commercial procurement requiring little in the way of modifications. The DoD IG’s office accused the Air Force’s Assistant Secretary for Acquisition, Marvin R. Sambur of failing to provide the procurement program with “effective oversight.”

This negative report is the second major criticism of Air Force acquisition plans this year. The other program receiving negative attention is, of course, the much-maligned proposal for the Air Force to lease 100 modified Boeing 767s as aerial refueling tankers for more than they would cost to purchase outright.

The C-130J, a derivative but supposedly improved version of the C-130 Hercules family of transports, was billed by Lockheed Martin as a significantly improved version of the rugged and reliable airlifter. Lockheed Martin claims that the “J” model can carry 128 troops (almost 40 percent more than older models), has more powerful and efficient Rolls Royce engines, and features computerized systems that eliminate the need for a navigator and flight engineer. Original crew sizes of five could be reduced to just three: a pilot, co-pilot and loadmaster.

Problems with the C-130J have plagued delivered aircraft in every squadron that has received them, including active-duty Air Force, Air National Guard, Air Force Reserve and Marine Corps KC-130Js used for aerial refueling.

Earlier this week, several military officials confirmed that the delivered airplanes have not passed several vital readiness tests, thereby preventing their use in combat air assaults, psychological operations, hurricane monitoring or air refueling. Despite these failures and almost non-existent utilization rates, the Air Force has continued to make program progress payments to Lockheed Martin.

While the American taxpayers, through the Air Force, continue to pay Lockheed Martin for aircraft that don’t work as designed and are unavailable for use, two weather squadrons in Mississippi, as well as other general purpose, airlift, air refueling and psy ops squadrons in California, North Carolina, Maryland and Pennsylvania, have been forced to use older aircraft to carry out their assigned taskings.

In cases where older aircraft are no longer available, missions for U.S. Central Command have suffered negative impacts or have not been carried out at all. These were just some of the damning statements made in the DoD IG report signed by Assistant Inspector General Mary L. Urgone.

The first Air National Guard unit to receive the C-130J, Maryland’s 175th Wing, has been unable to certify its aircraft as mission ready. This failure is now public, despite the fact that the wing took possession of its first “J” models as far back as 1999 and 2000.  

At Cherry Point MCAS, Marine Aerial Refueling and Transport Squadron 252’s C-130Js have been plagued by refueling pods that do not work as designed, the IG report found. Marines assigned to the squadron reported that they were forced to modify pods from older aircraft for use on new airframes. The “J” models delivered to the Marines at Cherry Point 18 months ago are still not available for operational use.

What is particularly vexing about the program is that the C-130J was sold to the Air Force in the first place as a commercial aircraft requiring little or no further modifications. Despite sales to the Air Force, Marine Corps and several foreign air forces, including the Royal Air Force, the Italian Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Danish Air Force, Lockheed Martin has not yet succeeded in selling any aircraft to commercial users. Since the program was first launched, purchase prices for U.S. buyers have risen steadily from $33.9 million in 1995 to almost $62 million today.

The IG report also cited 33 outstanding deficiencies with the airplane that are considered capable of causing “death, severe injury, major loss of equipment or systems, or directly restricting combat or operational readiness.”  Other problems plaguing the aircraft include inability to meet cargo and maximum range requirements, inadequately developed software, insufficient onboard maintenance diagnostics and anti-missile protection systems. The existing deficiencies mean that the new aircraft cannot participate in night formation flying, dropping paratroops and supplies, search and rescue missions or hurricane watching.

While marketed as a commercial aircraft capable of being modified, Lockheed Martin, according to the IG report has been completely unable to deliver one aircraft that meets Air Force or Marine Corps specifications. Given the lack of input from foreign military users, there is no way of knowing whether the Australians, British, Italians or Danes have been able to put these expensive transports to good use, either.

Unlike purely commercial purchases of such major capital items by non-military entities, the U.S. government has a very powerful weapon in its arsenal to persuade non-performing contractors to get back in line. That weapon is the ability to withhold both progress and final payments for goods, services and/or materials that do not meet the specifications stipulated in the prime contract. From information detailed in the DoD IG report, it is quite evident that Lockheed Martin has failed to do so.

The 117 aircraft contracted for by the Air Force and Marines will cost the U.S. taxpayers $7.45 billion dollars. Based on all of the negatives associated with this program, that is money that could be better used in other areas of defense-related procurement.

The Air Force disputes the findings of the report and is joined in this view by Lockheed Martin. Calling it a “troubled program” is a polite fiction that the Inspector General uses to inform us that the program has been mismanaged since its inception and that countless dollars have been wasted for a transporter that has yet to carry out its assigned missions.

The defense procurement process has never been known for its cost-effectiveness or maximization of dollars spent for goods delivered. But the 50 airplanes currently in the Air Force and Marine Corps inventories have cost the Treasury more than $2.6 billion. With defense funding being stretched to the limit, it is long past time when Lockheed Martin’s avarice should have been challenged and curtailed.  

The men and women who will fly these airplanes deserve the finest weapons systems we can provide. To date, the Air Force and Lockheed Martin have failed in their responsibility to the fighting men and women who need these airplanes.

 

Paul Connors is a Senior Editor of DefenseWatch. He can be reached at dwfeedback@yahoo.com."
Ai de ti Lusitânia, que dominarás em todas as nações...
 

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fgomes

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« Responder #9 em: Julho 29, 2004, 09:40:04 pm »
Os problemas com Loockeed Martin não são só com os Hercules, as contrapartidas relativas ao fornecimento de F-16 à Polónia e ao Chile estão a ser um problema, com a empresa americana a tentar "roer a corda" depois dos negócios concluidos. Tudo isto para ser bastante revelador da cultura empresarial da empresa em causa . Razão têm os meus primos americanos, que dizem que muitas empresas de defesa são dirigidas por indivíduos sem escrúpulos cujo objectivo é aumentar os lucros a qualquer preço !
Mais pormenores aqui:
http://www.defesanet.com.br/fx/wbjf16offseteng/
 

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« Responder #10 em: Julho 29, 2004, 09:55:35 pm »
Creio que estamos todos a viver o resultado da cultura dos "economistas" e dos "gestores" formados para desempenhar uma função específica e que não lhes dá a visão global das coisas. E sobretudo que não lhes dá o conhecimento do que as firmas fazem nem qual a sua função na sociedade. O objectivo desta gente é o lucro selvagem o que coloca em causa a sobrevivência a longo prazo da empresa.
Dantes havia um patrão, uma família que cresceu e desenvolveu-se com o negócio ou actividade. Agora quem gere é um estranho ao sistema que é contratado em função das suas classificações, imagem ou contacto político. Não pela sua habilidade de chefia ou de melhor produzir um serviço ou produto.
Ai de ti Lusitânia, que dominarás em todas as nações...