The Air Force Special Operations Command intends to replace parts on its CV-22 Ospreys after taking a close look at a propulsion problem that has persisted for more than a decade and could be fatal.
Recovery efforts for an Osprey that made an emergency landing in Norway are still ongoing. The three-star leader of the organization emphasized that there is still much to learn regarding what is causing the tiltrotor aircraft’s clutch, and consequently, the engines, to stall. The clutch enables the engine to drive the gear system that rotates the large rotors on the Osprey. In the event that one engine fails, each engine can drive the other rotor. The problem occurs when the load is quickly switched between motors while the clutch slips and then corrects itself. During a roundtable discussion with reporters on Tuesday, Lt. Gen. Jim Slife stated, “What I intend to do is put a time-change requirement on those clutches.” “The supply system is going to take a while to react to that because we don’t replace all that many of them right now.”