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Devilfish
Topic Author
Posts: 5367
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 7:52 am

Viper Engine Larceny

Thu Dec 06, 2012 5:13 pm

Veering away from the usual fare on MilAv, here's another case of pilfered defense items.....

http://www.defensenews.com/article/2...odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

Quote:
"JERUSALEM — Thieves have made off with several U.S.-made engines for F-16 warplanes worth millions of dollars from an airbase in central Israel, army radio reported Dec. 6.

Israel’s Walla Internet site said preliminary findings after an investigation by military police indicated there may have been collusion between the thieves and personnel, either military or civilian, at the base.

It said the military police suspect the engines may have been stolen to be sold as scrap metal. It is not known when the thefts took place."



Given the cost of the missing articles, it definitely cannot be called as grand larceny.....and considering the security implications, robbery will be too mild a classification.

Sabotage or treason would not be a far fetched charge if you add where it happened.

It stretches credulity a bit to think those were destined for the scrappers.   
"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
 
Newark727
Posts: 1426
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 6:42 pm

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:38 am

Quoting Devilfish (Thread starter):
It stretches credulity a bit to think those were destined for the scrappers.

Yeah, if you were just out to steal specific kinds of metal to sell for scrap, wouldn't there be way easier and less dangerous ways to find it?

On the other hand, a jet engine seems like one of those things that, upon stealing, is pretty darn hard to sell on without someone noticing. Weird stuff.
 
BMI727
Posts: 11167
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:25 am

Quoting Newark727 (Reply 1):
Yeah, if you were just out to steal specific kinds of metal to sell for scrap, wouldn't there be way easier and less dangerous ways to find it?

Yes, but that may not be what they were after.

Quoting Newark727 (Reply 1):
On the other hand, a jet engine seems like one of those things that, upon stealing, is pretty darn hard to sell on without someone noticing.

I'm not so sure about that. You can get some pretty heavy stuff on the black market and you have to wonder what the Chinese, Russians, et. al. might pay to get their hands on something like that to tear it apart.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
Newark727
Posts: 1426
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 6:42 pm

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:09 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 2):
I'm not so sure about that. You can get some pretty heavy stuff on the black market and you have to wonder what the Chinese, Russians, et. al. might pay to get their hands on something like that to tear it apart.

I suppose that might be true, I guess it depends on who the thieves actually were and what sort of channels they have access to. I always figured that if the Chinese and Russians were trying to do something like this of their own volition they would try something a bit more elegant like some kind of front-company set up but there are I guess plenty of possibilities.
 
fridgmus
Posts: 1296
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:28 am

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:13 am

Not to mention that members of the Israeli Defense Forces are very, very poorly paid. An inside job sounds very believable to me. Hope they find the missing engines.

F
The Lockheed Super Constellation, the REAL Queen of the Skies!
 
AirRyan
Posts: 2398
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:57 am

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:57 pm

Sadly it won't be the first time Israel let's Western technology reach China. You do realize the greatest setback right now on the new Chinese fighter jets are the engines? Coincidence? I don't think so.
 
johns624
Posts: 1249
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RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sat Dec 08, 2012 8:22 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 2):
You can get some pretty heavy stuff on the black market and you have to wonder what the Chinese, Russians, et. al. might pay to get their hands on something like that to tear it apart.
Quoting AirRyan (Reply 5):
You do realize the greatest setback right now on the new Chinese fighter jets are the engines? Coincidence? I don't think so.

You do realize that Venezuela and Pakistan both fly the F16? I'm sure that Russia and China could get any information or parts that they needed from them. Besides, the F16 isn't exactly cutting edge technology.
 
BMI727
Posts: 11167
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sat Dec 08, 2012 10:30 pm

Quoting johns624 (Reply 6):
You do realize that Venezuela and Pakistan both fly the F16? I'm sure that Russia and China could get any information or parts that they needed from them.

Maybe or maybe not. Depending on what exactly the engines were, they may have been better versions than either of those two have. (All of the Venezuelan F-16s are Block 15s, but Pakistan's are newer) Plus those countries might simply have not wanted to provide the info.

Quoting johns624 (Reply 6):
Besides, the F16 isn't exactly cutting edge technology.

It has been continually updated over the years, and some of the engine technology from newer engines (like the F119 and F135) was rolled back. You could be entirely right that what was stolen was nothing special, but maybe not.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
Oroka
Posts: 1078
Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2006 4:37 am

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:41 am

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 5):
You do realize the greatest setback right now on the new Chinese fighter jets are the engines?

Wouldnt it be awesome to have a copy of an American engine, in a copy of an American funded jet design based on the F-16?
 
Newark727
Posts: 1426
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 6:42 pm

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Sun Dec 09, 2012 7:13 am

Quoting Oroka (Reply 8):
Wouldnt it be awesome to have a copy of an American engine, in a copy of an American funded jet design based on the F-16?

I can't help but imagine the result as being something like a protracted game of aeronautic Telephone.
 
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Devilfish
Topic Author
Posts: 5367
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 7:52 am

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:55 pm

Quoting Newark727 (Reply 1):
On the other hand, a jet engine seems like one of those things that, upon stealing, is pretty darn hard to sell on without someone noticing.

Especially when it's "several" as the reports says.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 2):
Yes, but that may not be what they were after.

More "exotic" metal and materials come to mind.

Quoting Newark727 (Reply 3):
I suppose that might be true, I guess it depends on who the thieves actually were and what sort of channels they have access to.

No conclusive evidence was given, but this alludes to a modern day version of Ali Baba and his cohorts  ...

http://www.f-16.net/news_article4667.html

Quote:
"This leads investigators to believe that the thieves went in and out through the gates. This would have to be done with a large vehicle, since the engines weigh over 1.5 tons and are more than 15 feet long.

No suspects have been arrested yet but the most likely possibility is that the engines were stolen by Arab metal thieves, weapons dealers or terror-related agents.
"

For balance, the editorial noted that some sources later said that only engine parts were stolen.

http://www.f-16.net/gallery_item46690.html


Quoting AirRyan (Reply 5):
You do realize the greatest setback right now on the new Chinese fighter jets are the engines?
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 7):
some of the engine technology from newer engines (like the F119 and F135) was rolled back. You could be entirely right that what was stolen was nothing special, but maybe not.
.
If indeed 'several' engines were lost, could there be 'sneak previews' of F100-PW220 powered stealth fighters across the eastern skies?      


Not unexpectedly, some are quick to take umbrage at the mere mention of 'reverse engineering'   

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/th...hina-upset-at-being-called-ou.html

Quote:
"Perhaps most significantly 'the J-15 is powered by home-made Taihang (WS-10) turbofan engine, which is more powerful than the Su-33's engine,' the People's Daily says.

That last part is actually quite a significant development, if it is true. China has not had an easy time of building jet engines. Most of its previous efforts have fallen flat with engines exploding in mid-air and the like. If the Chinese have learned to build their own engines, that could mean that they will not be dependent upon Russian hardware for much longer. However, building reverse engineered engines is one thing, coming up with and building your own design is quite another."


Quoting Oroka (Reply 8):
Wouldnt it be awesome to have a copy of an American engine, in a copy of an American funded jet design based on the F-16?

Something like this?  
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Photo © Guiqi2006
View Large View Medium
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Photo © Peter Terlouw

"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
 
Oroka
Posts: 1078
Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2006 4:37 am

RE: Viper Engine Larceny

Mon Dec 10, 2012 7:11 pm

Quoting Devilfish (Reply 10):
Something like this?

lol, yup, that would be the one. Nice to see the cycle possibly coming to a close. American funded Lavi copy with copys of F-16 engines in it. Going to be a decent jet. Thanks Israel!

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