IRVINE, Calif. … Diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton Corporation is a key component supplier for the Bell-Boeing-built V-22 Osprey, which recently surpassed 100,000 flying hours during a U.S. Marine Corps combat mission in Afghanistan. Manufactured under a 50-50 strategic alliance between Bell Helicopter and Boeing, the V-22 Osprey is a multirole combat aircraft using tiltrotor technology to combine the vertical performance of a helicopter with the speed and range of a fixed-wing aircraft.
“Eaton is proud to be part of the V-22 Osprey platform and the role it has played in providing vital support for military missions as well as humanitarian relief efforts,” said Bradley J. Morton, president of Eaton’s Aerospace Group. “We congratulate Bell Helicopter and Boeing on achieving this impressive milestone for the V-22 fleet.”
Eaton components on the V-22 demonstrate wide-ranging technologies and capabilities that help improve aircraft performance and optimize engine health. Eaton is a world leader in the design and manufacture of advanced power and motion-control components and is a key supplier on the V-22 for engine-driven pumps, inlet particle separators, primary and back-up hydraulic power drive motors and cargo door DC motorpumps.
Eaton also manufactures the aircraft’s fluid-sensing and debris-monitoring systems, which capture, retain and analyze fluid debris particles to determine if a critical engine component failure is imminent. Additional features include a vortex separator that removes air from engine oil with an efficiency of 95 percent, and desiccant breathers that remove moisture from air drawn down into the gearbox or transmission to prevent corrosion of critical gears and bearings.
Optical sensors supplied by Eaton are high-reliability, solid state switches that detect oil levels in the mid-wing, tilt-axis and prop-rotor gearboxes. These units have no moving parts, are fully explosion-proof and are protected from transients on the power supply line.
Additional Eaton content on the V-22 includes hoses, tubes, clamps, swivels and Rynglok™ hydraulic tube fittings; engine air particle separator blowers; and oil dump valves and shut-off valves.
The flight-hour milestone marks the latest major achievement for the V-22 Osprey program, which has accomplished 14 successful combat and humanitarian deployments since it was first declared operational in 2007. The aircraft also has been recognized for its safety record. The Naval Safety Center reports that the V-22 has the lowest Class A mishap rate of any rotorcraft in the Marine Corps over the past decade.
“The Osprey gives combatant commanders unprecedented agility and operational reach,” said Gen. James Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps, in a news release issued by the V-22 Joint Program Office. “The revolutionary capability of this aircraft is a cornerstone of our Marine Air Ground Task Force. It is safe and survivable, and effective and efficient.”
Bell-Boeing reported that the 100,000-hour milestone mission was flown Feb. 10 during a U.S. Marine Corps Osprey combat mission in Afghanistan. More than 130 tiltrotors are currently in operation and support Marine Corps and Air Force Special Operations Command missions.
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