What not to do with TKS...

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by denverpilot, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Photo floating around some other sites at the moment. Worthy of a thread here...

    [​IMG]

    That’s a FIKI TKS SR-22T.

    Hmmm. How does that happen? And what’s going on?

    (I know from reading it elsewhere but I’ll let y’all discuss first.)
     
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  2. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    Assuming no defect in the system, looks like one of two limitations exceeded. Pattern suggests which one.
     
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  3. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    You’re on the right track. ;)
     
  4. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    Let others play, then.
     
  5. GRG55

    GRG55 En-Route

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    Isn't TKS an ice prevention system, not an ice removal system ?
    Waited too long before turning it on?
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
  6. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Took off with contaminated wings and decided to run the TKS to get the rest of the snow off?
     
  7. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    well....it still flys Ok.o_O
     
  8. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner En-Route

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    Looks to me like TKS was turned on and it made TKS ice.
     
  9. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner En-Route

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    Ice doesn't build on top of the wing in flight that way.
     
  10. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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  11. luvflyin

    luvflyin En-Route PoA Supporter

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    That's my guess. Wrong kinda juice in the system.
     
  12. bflynn

    bflynn En-Route

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    Ok, I know one limitation would be the OAT - below -76F, the system won't work because the glycol/water mix will freeze. I think that's what we're seeing here.

    What's the second limitation? Operating outside the mix envelope?

    I know nothing about ice beyond it's bad to fly with, but it's good to learn.
     
  13. bflynn

    bflynn En-Route

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    TKS actually can be anti-ice as well as ice removal. At least according to google, definitely not according to my experience.
     
  14. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Some on the right track, others way out to lunch. :)

    Two aircraft systems limitations being broken in the photo. Both related.

    Wings weren’t contaminated prior.

    Not water in TKS System, but kinda close.

    @bflynn hit it... temperature limits.

    So here’s the deal according to a pile of Cirrus instructors:

    Aircraft is at FL240 at -43C. Both the TKS and *airframe* operating limits are being exceeded.

    Hmmm... buy a nice turbocharged airplane and in the winter you can outclimb your airframe temperature limits!

    The TKS “juice” tends to “froth” at that temp and altitude and it “no workie”. People have seen it do it warmer depending on pressure and age of fluid.

    In fact, it makes the mess seen.

    So, other speculation is that someone left the fluid in the tanks all summer and didn’t drain and refill.

    Scenario was a fairly inexperienced instructor took the photo and posted it somewhere not realizing he was playing with very bad things there. Just turn it on and go fly in the Flight levels, right?

    Not much time in weather or ice, and a bunch of Cirrus instructors kinda jumped his butt. (Unfortunately I missed that part of the show...)

    Someone kept the photo (nothing ever dies on the Internet right?) and reposted it for a learning tool.

    Sooooo... review those systems and know their limitations!

    (And no, I haven’t flown one and didn’t know the limitations myself, just thought it was a fascinating photo. That much of a mess on the wings at FL240 where the wing performance isn’t going to be all that stellar... exceeding the airframe limitation for cold... lots of nope nope nope there...)
     
  15. Mtns2Skies

    Mtns2Skies Super Moderator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    If fuel tanks can get water in them from condensation I don't see why TKS tanks can't. If TKS is water soluble, which I assume it is, then as the condensation/water enters the tank it can raise the freezing point. Just my theory.
     
  16. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    There is a minimum operating temperature limitation for the TKS system in the SR, -30°F/-34°C. That number doesn't appear to be universal, so it may be airframe related. If I understand it correctly, the concern is that the alcohol in the mixture begins to gel (like that vodka in the freezer but more so). The result is that ice crystals which would normally not adhere at those temperatures, mix with the gel and produce slush.

    That's the limitation I'm betting on based on the pattern. The other limitation I was thinking of is more universal - the system is not effective in freezing rain or drizzle.
     
  17. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    TKS tanks are tiny compared to fuel tanks so the amount of condensate will be minuscule. The other word you are looking for is miscible rather than soluble and alcohols and glycols are usually miscible with water so TKS should be miscible.

    (Damn MEs know how things go round-n-round but get lost with fluids if it’s not a hydraulic power system.)
     
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  18. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If’n an instructor thinks they need TKS at -40 degrees they have problems way beyond just operating limits. Anyway, return that instructor for re-grooving.
     
  19. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Is this an automatic system or pilot activated? I would hope it uses some sort of temp vs ice detected to initiate the TKS.
     
  20. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Pilot activated. The TKS is supposed to be activated prior to entering icing conditions.
     
  21. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    The folks on the other forum were saying -40C in the Cirrus training.

    I did forget to share there was no supercooled water droplets or other precip of any sort. The airplane made that mess all by itself.

    A number of Cirrus instructors agreed with that and a smaller number regularly flying jets in the Flight Levels said they’ve seen supercooled water droplets accrete ice at temps that low when “it shouldn’t have been possible”. One specifically knew his particular ice was formed by massive lifting from mountain wave.

    I’m staying out of it, with no time in the Flight Levels in anything. Just sharing. Folks say they’ve seen stuff stick at -40C. I’m not arguing for or against.

    Most Cirri have a two stage pump Low/High for TKS, all pilot activated.

    The newbie CFI was well admonished and took his post down after realizing he’d posted that he flew the aircraft outside of its airframe temperature limits. Not something you leave online after ten other folks whack you upside the head, I suppose. Learning experience. Apparently Cirrus doesn’t like what their plastic brew does at those temps. Let alone the TKS mess.

    Numerous folks in the re-post let him know with that mess on the wing at that altitude he was really playing with fire and didn’t realize it. Bullet, missed. Lived to fly another day.
     
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  22. luvflyin

    luvflyin En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Was there identifying info in the posts? Has FSDO called him yet
     
  23. Norman

    Norman En-Route

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    Nate,

    I have only worked on one plane with TKS and the mission at the time was to stop it from leaking all over the owner's hangar floor. I don't understand what the photo is showing.

    I put on my dunce cap when I got out of bed this morning. LOL.
     
  24. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    You can read it yourself... Top of page 4, although I can imagine either different numbers for different variations or instructors talking about the buffer in the numbers (the way some do about weight and balance limits).

    I happened to recall something about this when I almost had access to one of these (I did fly it once with an instructor, but way to expensive to get checked out for personal flight). Looking at it reaffirmed there are certain things you really want to read the POH (and supplement) extra closely. Ice protection whether FIKI or not, is definitely one of them in my book.
     
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  25. bflynn

    bflynn En-Route

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    The TKS system works by bleeding tiny amounts of glycol onto the leading edge of the wings, tail, rudder or where ever installed. The glycol combines with the moisture and produces a mixture which freezes at -76F.

    Google make me smart. Huh, huh...
     
  26. labbadabba

    labbadabba Pattern Altitude

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    I've seen something recently too that is a polymer onto which ice will not adhere. One of the applications listed was as a coating to wings of small aircraft.
     
  27. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Three pilot selected options. Normal,high and max. The pump runs on a timer. I forget the exact cycle but it’s something like 30 seconds on and 30 off depending on which setting you choose. I’ve only had to use high once and it was short lived. If I have to use the max setting, I didn’t plan correctly. The 22 can hold 8 gallons of TKS. On the normal setting it gives you about 2.5 hours of fluid. There’s an Anti-Ice gauge and it shows the time remaining and gallons of TKS fluid.
     
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  28. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Yeah I think there's a company testing it on drones right now. Looks promising.
     
  29. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Shrug. Just passing along what they’re saying. They also all claim to be Cirrus factory trained. :)

    I “are” just a lowly spam-can driver. ;)
     
  30. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    It’s TKS “gelling”/“freezing” all over the top of an airfoil in flight, at night, near or in mountainous terrain. :-(
     
  31. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Those who saw it claim there was, but I didn’t see it, so I don’t really know.

    It had to be quick because I usually have notifications set up on various aviation groups and if I’m bored or waiting on something, I’m reading them. And I had some hours of downtime the last two mornings before work due to scheduling and gigs and dogs and whatnot.

    I think from the descriptions of the people in the repost comments various experienced Cirrus instructors probably already gave the kid enough of a hard time he won’t forget the lesson. Enough trauma there that I doubt a FSDO call would be much more than an “I know... I KNOW... I missed it...” kind of phone call. Hahaha.
     
  32. Daniel L

    Daniel L Pre-Flight

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    I wouldve freaked out.

    Sent from my big plastic brick.
     
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  33. TylerSC

    TylerSC Pre-takeoff checklist

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    For me FL240 at night in icing conditions would be like trying to fly to the moon.
     
  34. GeorgeC

    GeorgeC Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    I've heard of upper temperature limits on composite planes, but not lower limits. Where are these airframe temperature limits defined? I didn't see them in the POH, but I'm not a Cirrus guy, so maybe I don't know where to look.
     
  35. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner En-Route

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    If they existed, they'd be in the limitations section .
     
  36. FORANE

    FORANE Pattern Altitude

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    What kind of oxygen mask, o2 flow rate and o2 cylinders does the cirrus have?
     
  37. bnt83

    bnt83 Final Approach

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    TKS being sticky discussing ****, it's going to collect whatever dirt and polution you fly through.
     
  38. TheGolfPilot

    TheGolfPilot Line Up and Wait

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    Last I checked, one of the limitations to the FIKI airplanes is that you aren’t supposed to fly it in freezing rain. I don’t know what that looks like on a wing but if I had to guess it would look something like that
     
  39. NoHeat

    NoHeat En-Route PoA Supporter

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    I don’t understand why anyone would choose to run the TKS pump when the OAT is well below -20C. Airframe icing cannot occur at such a temperature, right?
     
  40. Glenn D

    Glenn D Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The composite aircraft that I work on fly to -50c.... there is more of a problem with Hot / Wet conditions, however, that cold lots of systems start to shut down...