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  #31  
Old 11-14-2006, 02:30 PM
skiingman skiingman is offline
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Originally Posted by Waiter View Post
We retrofitted all of our Halon installations (Diesel Electric Generating plant) to CO2. (dump 20,000 gallons of this stuff into the generator building in 90 seconds)

I'm not the expert, but its my understanding that when Halon burns, it puts out some very toxic gases. This may not be a issue in your installation, as it normally takes a sustained fire, and several minutes of exposure to reach the toxic levels. You may want to read up on this a little more before pulling the pin.
CO2 is not a very clever option in an aircraft for a bunch of reasons, and it really isn't all that clever in a generating plant either. The Halon 1301 certainly produces some nasty toxins when exposed to hot fires, but at least it will put out those fires with a small amount of mass and without making the atmosphere unliveable for humans. CO2 on the other hand isn't going to put a fire out via flooding without snuffing out any human in the same space.

http://yarchive.net/chem/halon.html

The military (which owns a huge bank of Halon 1301) has done lots of research on this subject and confined spaces, note that nothing matches the low weight and volume of Halon 1301:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&ct=re...SPXuF1YD71OcIw
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  #32  
Old 11-14-2006, 03:15 PM
SteveWrightNZ SteveWrightNZ is offline
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while the aircraft was on fire, it seems to me it was the actual landing that caused the fatality. Clearly it is difficult, but essential to keep ones' head in order while flying a flaming wreckage.

I am rather sobered by the regular posting of lost comrades in this forum. It is not something I have experienced before.

S
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  #33  
Old 11-14-2006, 04:20 PM
rutanfan rutanfan is offline
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Originally Posted by SteveWrightNZ View Post
while the aircraft was on fire, it seems to me it was the actual landing that caused the fatality. Clearly it is difficult, but essential to keep ones' head in order while flying a flaming wreckage.
S
I don’t think it is healthy to make assumptions of this magnitude.
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  #34  
Old 11-14-2006, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by SteveWrightNZ View Post
while the aircraft was on fire, it seems to me it was the actual landing that caused the fatality. Clearly it is difficult, but essential to keep ones' head in order while flying a flaming wreckage.

I am rather sobered by the regular posting of lost comrades in this forum. It is not something I have experienced before.

S
Steve is right. I have a set of photos from the crash site. He touched down in a grassy field with the NG retracted. At the end of the slide hit the road embankment and flipped, ending up on the gravel road. We hope he died instantly....
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  #35  
Old 11-15-2006, 11:30 AM
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The published photo I saw was very disturbing and really struck home how serious an inflight fire is and how little time we have to get the aircraft on the ground. Obscured vision from smoke and smoke inhalation on a pusher may get you before the flames cause a structural problem or burn the pilot.

If we can learn anything from this accident and ones like the Swissair fire and crash off NS a few years back, it is to treat smoke in the cockpit as an immediate emergency and get down ASAP. You can determine the source of the smoke on the ground. Many times you get no second chance and seconds can count. If you've ever had this in real life, I can tell you it is NOT fun.
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  #36  
Old 11-15-2006, 05:02 PM
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Default Gas fire suppression

I suppose this may not be the place for this, but I see many people on this thread talking about Halon and CO2. I have worked designing installations for these chemicals in computer rooms, and the manufacturers always stressed that the most important thing is to make sure that the area is sealed. If you are going to install one of these systems to cover the engine compartment, you will need flaps to cover at least the air intake as well, or your fire will likely restart as soon as the suppressant runs out. Depending on how your cooling air system is set up, closing the intake should create a vaccuum and extinguish the flames. A CO2 system would help to cool whatever was on fire and reduce the chances of the fire re-igniting.
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  #37  
Old 11-15-2006, 05:50 PM
rutanfan rutanfan is offline
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Originally Posted by Buly View Post
Steve is right. I have a set of photos from the crash site. He touched down in a grassy field with the NG retracted. At the end of the slide hit the road embankment and flipped, ending up on the gravel road. We hope he died instantly....
I think you and I have the same photo. And you may very well be correct. He may have died regardless of the fire (I too hope he died instantly). Although I’ve always assumed that the two tire tracks (minus the front gear) was a result of him pulling back on the stick & therefore reducing the weight of the nose. Or perhaps he didn’t have the time to crank it down… or forgot (again speculation that I don’t feel comfortable making.) Regardless, the nose definitely didn’t touch down until he hit the embankment.

I have heard, yet never stated publicly because I don’t know for sure, that the fire was a result of a leak in his header tank that made its way to the turbo. If this is in fact true (again, I don’t know) then it is entirely possible that the header tank to was on fire (remember the Varieze header tank is vented and therefore has an unlimited source of oxygen fuel.) If this is the case, then landing ‘like f$%#ing now’ might have been the most prudent thing to do.

I certainly mean no disrespect to anyone who has posted, but we don’t know if Glenn failed to “keep one’s head” and this speculation is in itself harmless… my fear is however that these things tend to snowball. I’m sure that I’m not the only one on this forum that had to have the 1:00 am “Ya’ mom. I know John Denver died in a Long-ez but that doesn’t mean the aircraft is inherently dangerous…” conversation.
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  #38  
Old 11-15-2006, 06:28 PM
Buly Buly is offline
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Originally Posted by rutanfan View Post
I think you and I have the same photo. And you may very well be correct. He may have died regardless of the fire (I too hope he died instantly). Although I’ve always assumed that the two tire tracks (minus the front gear) was a result of him pulling back on the stick & therefore reducing the weight of the nose. Or perhaps he didn’t have the time to crank it down… or forgot (again speculation that I don’t feel comfortable making.) Regardless, the nose definitely didn’t touch down until he hit the embankment.

I have heard, yet never stated publicly because I don’t know for sure, that the fire was a result of a leak in his header tank that made its way to the turbo. If this is in fact true (again, I don’t know) then it is entirely possible that the header tank to was on fire (remember the Varieze header tank is vented and therefore has an unlimited source of oxygen fuel.) If this is the case, then landing ‘like f$%#ing now’ might have been the most prudent thing to do.

I certainly mean no disrespect to anyone who has posted, but we don’t know if Glenn failed to “keep one’s head” and this speculation is in itself harmless… my fear is however that these things tend to snowball. I’m sure that I’m not the only one on this forum that had to have the 1:00 am “Ya’ mom. I know John Denver died in a Long-ez but that doesn’t mean the aircraft is inherently dangerous…” conversation.
Here is the photo that shows the nose dragging on the grass.
Nobody knows about what caused the fire. He installed on the back seat a plastic marine fuel tank befor he left. There was no fuel leak inside the plane, or he would have smelled it. I suspect burned or ruptured oil or fuel hose? But we'll never know.
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  #39  
Old 11-15-2006, 06:45 PM
rutanfan rutanfan is offline
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I stand corrected. The photo I have was taken at touchdown and clearly depicts the two mains but nothing in the center.
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  #40  
Old 11-15-2006, 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Red View Post
I suppose this may not be the place for this, but I see many people on this thread talking about Halon and CO2...
In a previous life I was a crashfirerescueman in the Marines (sat on the airfield waiting for crashes).

Anyone who has used either Halon or CO2 can tell you that these agents offer little utility in putting out well-fed fires, especially in an environment where there is any amount of wind (or slipstream). While our trucks carried several hundred pounds of Halon, its use was limited to theoretical circumstances where we were to limit damage to expensive burning substrates that might occur with water/foam. CO2 was carried to break canopies. Of the two, we only used Halon one time in two years on a C-130 wheel fire. Even then, we had to bounce the halon off the ground so as to not spray a sub-zero liquid on a ~2000? degree metal fire. Using hundreds of pounds of Halon on 400 gallon JP-4 training fires was an exercise in futility...though large aircraft use such systems for engine fire suppression in flight.

In contast, water mixed with a small fraction of foam (~10%) easily knocked down fuel fires in a hurry. I've never studied the science behind the foam, but it's pretty amazing stuff, even in a stiff breeze on the ground.
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  #41  
Old 11-16-2006, 01:54 AM
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David Staten David Staten is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben View Post

In contast, water mixed with a small fraction of foam (~10%) easily knocked down fuel fires in a hurry. I've never studied the science behind the foam, but it's pretty amazing stuff, even in a stiff breeze on the ground.
AFFF (Aqueous Film Forming Foam) or Protien Based (Cows blood, literally) foams worked by blanketing the liquid fueled fire and cutting off the vapor emissions. When fuel burns, its not the liquid thats burning, but a small layer of vapor that is rising from the liquid. Blanket that, and voila, no fuel and no more fire.

The foam layer does break down with time, so it requires re-application until the fuel is removed/recovered.

Something else kicked around is that of "Class A" foam (this was 10 years ago when I used to do volunteer fire suppression).. a 1% or less foam/soap with water formulation was used as a wetting agent.. decreasing the surface tension and allowing the water to penetrate into cracks and crevices of burning wood and put out deep seated fires (smoldering timber/lumber) that was hard to put out. A poor mans version was to drop a bottle of Dawn detergent in the tank before a response, rather than having a metering setup.. that works fine until you refill the tank later, causing suds to pour out of the tank overflow. The Class A designation referred to the fuel source/fire type (like on a Class ABC extinguisher, for instance)

OT.. but... interesting nonetheless.
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  #42  
Old 11-16-2006, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Ben View Post
though large aircraft use such systems for engine fire suppression in flight.
So do some small twins... However they release the halon high and foward in the airflow of the cowling as well as behind the rear cylinder tins so that it gets pushed through the entire cowling. On turboprops/jets/fans it isnt such an issue there is little airflow inside the cowlings. So when you dump the fire bottles the halon forces what is left of the atmosphere out smothering the fire. In theory you have turned off your fuel and hydraulic firewall shutoffs before you pulled the firebottle killing the fuel supply.

Thankfully in turboprops and jets you dont really care about what is burning inside the engine, as it can in most cases stand the fire as long as you cut the fuel, its what is outside the engine that kills you.
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