While watching news footage of a wildfire raging, maybe you've been struck by frustration at the lack of a high-tech, super-sized firefighting solution. Why, in 2009, don't firefighters have access to a super water-cannon? Where is the quick-hardening smothering shell? How much longer will we wait for a mountain-climbing hydro-Roomba?
The answer may be closer than you think. I was treated to a demonstration of the largest firefighting vehicle in the world, the Evergreen Supertanker.
With all the wild fires we seem to be having out west each year, I suspect this Evergreen Supertanker will be fully booked.
20,500 Gallons ?
How long does it take to fill and where can you fill it ?
The Bombardier 415 takes 12 seconds to scoop up a 6,137-litre (1,621-US-gallon) water load... The advanced Bombardier 415 aircraft scoops water from sites that are only two metres (6.5 feet) deep and 90 metres (300 feet) wide.
Refiling time is important in a remote forest fire.
Forrest Fire Robots are being researched and developed, which is very cool; this technology will hopefully lessen the needs of aircraft carrying tons of water.
"it is sprayed out of four 16-inch-wide nozzles under 40,000 pounds of pressure" This isn't likely. Please clarify.
I too would be very interested to learn how quickly it can be refilled and how it goes about doing so. It may be the largest, but if it's slow, it's useless.
The water pressure thing is pretty hokey.
And, I know how long it takes to even refuel one of these birds.
Couple that with adding water, and ground time for thru-flight insp. (if they even do a thru-flight), and you have a money bucket.
I worked for evergreen for 3 years and a mechanic. I saw this and its predecessor all the time. What alot of people dont realize is that it has 4 water bladders that hold 20000+ gallons each. Its only meant to use one bladder per pass, that way if you miss the target you didnt waste the whole trip, also someone mentioned the 415. That thing in a forest fire is like having a bucket when a city block is on fire. Sure it fills up fast but it does next to nothing in comparison. The FAA has never liked this idea and has been fighting it ever since conception. This aircraft first completed 5 years ago and still has never been used in a fire.
Oh, refill time is irrelevant. It takes longer to refuel it than to fill the bladders.
This thing is super cool.. Living in southern California, I am glad they have this.. I am finally ready for the next wild fire because I just purchased a "disaster blaster" its a big pump on a cart that that I can use my pools water to spread all over. heres the website disasterblaster.com
I presume they don't have to refuel the plane for each spritz it makes, so blader refill method and time IS important.
The Mars planes were made around 1943 ( I flew on the Marianas Mars in 1947 ) and it refills by landing in a lake. One is still in service, and I recently saw it in Lake Shasta during our firestorm up there last year. I could be wrong about this, but I believe it to be the largest seaplane in use. Or maybe EVER used. :) The Spruce Goose doesn't count as it was never "used". Not sure it ever got above the ground effects altitude!
What no video? I would love to see Anderson cooper on the air and then get dumped on by one of those planes.
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20,500 gallons and 40,000 PSI? I think you need to do a little more research and make sure of your information.
I was in a KC135(~Boeing 707) tanker unit and they could hold 202,000 lbs of fuel. That's equivalent to 24,300 gallons of water. A 747 is much bigger and should be able to carry 4 times that much.
Also, 40,000 PSI? I work in a power plant where the boiler drums are made from 6 inch thick steel to handle only 2400 PSI.
Something is missing here? Please explain.
Given other articles about this plane talk about the water providing 50,000lb of thrust (165psi into four 16" nozzles) I think there has been a units mix up.
source: machinedesign dot com
The weight of the water in four bladders of 20,000+ gallons each greatly exceeds the payload capacity of that aircraft. On Evergreen's web site, they list the total capacity at 20,500 gallons. Because it uses pumps to discharge the water instead of a gravity drop system, that capacity may be spread over multiple discharges.