Friday, March 4, 2011
V-22: Coming Full Circle (Web-Only Feature)
The Bell/Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor has come a long way since the early days when cost overruns, design problems and two back-to-back fatal accidents in 2000 nearly cancelled the program on several occasions. The bugs were worked out long ago and the vertical short/takeoff and landing (V/STOL)-capable V-22 is seeing a lot of action these days. Over the last two years, the V-22 has accumulated nearly 100,000 hours of flight time in harsh environments in Iraq and Afghanistan.The dispatch reliability rate is climbing, but still needs improvement, according to military leaders. The MV-22 mission readiness hovers between 62 percent and 65 percent, according to the U.S. Marine Corps.