Debris field of dreams

[This article was updated on 30/05/2012, see below]

Reporternews has more details on the story from last month that the Dyess Air Force Base has been FOD free for more than 1000 days.

Zero damage from foreign objects is practically impossible. Jet engines sucking in massive amounts of air will inevitably ingest something they shouldn’t.

Recognizing this, Air Combat Command decreed a “chargeable” FOD as an event that results in more than $50,000 in damage. It also set an acceptable FOD rate of 1.0, based on the number of chargeable incidents divided by flying hours.

The staff at Dyess should be applauded for their efforts, and although the article does mention the use of the FOD Boss, ,there is no mention at all of automated FOD detection. This is yet more evidence that, for some reason, the automated detection systems are not yet considered to be part of the standard arsenal in the fight against FOD. And with one of the biggest players in this industry, QinetiQ, no longer actively marketing their Tarsier system, it is starting to look like automated FOD detection might not have the future many in the industry had hoped.

Update:

It has been pointed out to me (i.e. I have been corrected) that the previous article covering the same story does indeed mention an automated FOD detection system i.e the FOD Finder from Trex. From the previous article:

“Keeping the flight line clear of FOD is a total team effort,” Smith said. “Things we do to minimize FOD are monthly base-wide FOD walks, handing out awards, such as “FOD Fighter of the Month,” using the FOD BOSS, Sweeper, FOD check points and the FOD Finder Radar Truck.”

Source (Reporternews & Dyess Air Force Base Homepage)

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