Aerial suppression of wildfires is a worldwide challenge demanding new approaches to counter drought, biomass buildup and population growth
Two fatal airtanker accidents caused by inflight structural failures last year led to major reassessments of the U.S. government's fire and aviation programs. Signaling a new willingness to accept outside scrutiny of its operations, the U.S. Forest Service allowed an Aviation Week & Space Technology editor to fly on single- and multiengine airtankers, leadplanes, Aerial Supervision Module aircraft, smokejumper platforms and a large helicopter during firefighting missions last summer. ...
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