Reports indicate three V-22 Ospreys were fired on while conducting an evacuation mission in South Sudan. (Bell Helicopter)
Sudan Demonstrates The V-22 Osprey Still Faces Operational Challenges -- Next Navy
So…the CV-22 Osprey chalks up more combat experience in Sudan, with three CV-22 Osprey aircraft apparently taking ground fire on descent into what was probably the Osprey’s first noncombatant evacuation operation (NEO). Four of the approximately 46 aboard were reportedly hurt, and the Ospreys aborted their mission and diverted to an alternative landing zone. (A good summary report is here)
Good thing is that the aircraft took hits and kept flying. I don’t know where the craft were hit, but the fact that these complex engineering showpieces flew for 550 miles after being hit is, at least, another positive demonstration that the airframe is a bit more tough and resilient than critics expected.
But…the mission was left undone, leaving us to again wonder if we are still seeing the services struggle to slot this specialized airframe into roles and missions for which it is–as yet–unsuited.
Given that the details are scanty, I offer a few items for speculative discussion:
Read more ....
Update #1: Special Ops CV-22 Hit by Ground Fire in South Sudan, Personnel Injured -- Intercepts/Defense News
Update #2: 3 U.S. military aircraft hit in S. Sudan, 4 wounded -- Air Force Times/AP
My Comment: The above report is a must read on the effectiveness of the CV-22 Osprey aircraft in hostile environments.