Amphibious Water Bombers Stage At Wyoming Airport
This photo was taken by the folks of the Casper/Natrona County International Airport in Wyoming. It's one of several fire-fighting planes of this type that landed there during their regional firefighting excursions.
Welcome to the dry season. Fires are popping up here and there and lucky for us very few of those fires are anywhere near as large as what we had at this time last year.
The areas that are burning are hard to get to. What we need is a way to scoop up some water and drop, then scoop and drop again.
These planes were literally built for this. Watch this video, below, to see how this plane was designed and how it works.
This plane is also referred to as "The Super Scooper."
This plane can pick up over 6000 liters of water in one scoop and it only takes about 10 seconds for those tanks to fill.
They will end up putting an average of about 3 tanker trucks of water on a fire in one hour. Usually dropped all at once.
Big wings that are larger than a jumbo jet. They have a highly arched shape and huge flaps for maximum lift even at slow speeds. In fact, they provide so much lift the tail is oversized to handle it all.
Massive and powerful 2500 horsepower turboprop engines, all attached to a massive boat. Turboprop engines are like jet engines but with a prop attached.
These planes need to be able to get up and down fast as they take water from lakes of all sizes.
Skim the surface, fill the takes, and pull up and out even though the plane is now a lot heavier than it was just 10 seconds ago.
Because of the way the wings and flaps are constructed this plane can fly low and slow over a fire, drop what it has, then speed back for another fill-up.
Hello, flyboys. Thank you for your service.