Context of the study

Every year, thousands of forest's hectares go up in smoke because of wildfires wether they are criminal acts or not. In the framework of firefighting, airtankers (or water bombers) play a crucial role. The airtanker can release either pure water or water completed with retardant which delays the spreading of the fire by covering the vegetation with a thin fireproof layer. When the weather is not clement (often during summertime), the water bombers can practice air suveillance, with full tanks, as a precaution. 


Illustration : Airtanker (or water bomber) (source :

Airtankers are subject to important mechanical stress :

  • they have to release the water as close as possible to the fire, so they have to fly at low altitude, with turbulences caused by the fire, and often strong wind.
  • the release of water or retardant causes strong mechanical stress on the plane.


That is the second point hereabove which is the base of this study. Indeed, airtankers are subject to flying difficulties and to important stresses. This can explain the frequency of accidents, and especially rupture in flight. That is why limiting this mechanical stress is a real stake. This limitation can be realised by several ways, and one of them is to reduce the sloshing in the tanks of water bombers and this is the object of our study.