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F-35 IOC Date, 2020  
User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 10551 times:

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...ng%20Finds%20Additional%20Problems

Before 2020, doesn't look likely for the US forces, especially the Navy. The British are worried that their new aircraft carrier will be ready before then and will have no planes and an empty deck. They are thinking about the F-18 or others as a solution, especially if there is no easy and quick solution to the B's arrestor hook problem. If the British do order something else due to the delays, do they cancel their F-35B orders?

Canada has publicly stated, their F-35 IOC not before 2020.

I wonder if the partner countries are also on the hook for cost over runs?

Has there ever been such a long development period for an aircraft? From the 1990s to 2020s it's going to be about 25 years to IOC. These early LRIP tranches are just test planes that will likely never see action. How long did it take for the F-22?

120 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 1, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 10457 times:
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from the above Aviationweek report:
"Meanwhile, changes continue inside the JSF program office, where Director of Engineering Doug Ebersole has been overseeing a transition from an office that that “reviews and reports” to one that “engages and influences,” according to an August 2011 briefing. Also, and apparently for the first time, the office is establishing a strong engineering presence in Lockheed Martin’s Fort Worth production center."

Engineering that is remote from the manufacturing floor is always late, incomplete, and second guessing the problems. The releases of revised engineering frequently take twice to three times as long to reach the production floor.. So these engineering staffing changes should produce more timely results.

[Edited 2012-02-04 18:39:31 by srbmod]

User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 10405 times:

FYI, 2020 is the IOC for Block 3 F-35's. The USMC intends to IOC the F-35B using Block 2B software sometime in 2016.

User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1079 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 10246 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Thread starter):
They are thinking about the F-18 or others as a solution, especially if there is no easy and quick solution to the B's arrestor hook problem. If the British do order something else due to the delays, do they cancel their F-35B orders?

The British cancelled their 'B' orders awhile ago. The 'C' model is the one having arresting hook problems. The British changed their order to the 'C' model.


User currently offlineebj1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 10067 times:

My understanding is that Lockheed Martin has a solution to the arrestor hook problem and the problem isn't as huge as some have suggested.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 2):
FYI, 2020 is the IOC for Block 3 F-35's. The USMC intends to IOC the F-35B using Block 2B software sometime in 2016.

Sounds like the title of this thread is based on information taken out of context. But then, the media and avid F-35 bashers would commend someone for doing that, whether intentionally or accidentally.



Dare to dream; dream big!
User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29791 posts, RR: 58
Reply 5, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 10061 times:

There is definitely a large contingent of anti-f35 people here.

It sort of reminds me of all the numnutz that where and still do dog the 787 as a waste of money and a failure



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 6, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 9912 times:

Quoting ebj1248650 (Reply 4):
Sounds like the title of this thread is based on information taken out of context. But then, the media and avid F-35 bashers would commend someone for doing that, whether intentionally or accidentally.

The title is taken from official IOC date estimates and discussions by two Non US F-35 program participants. Stated clear as day.

State side, neither Lockheed, the US DoD nor any US forces have released an IOC date for the F-35 or given any official estimates. I am just stating the facts.

And I really can't fault the US DoD for not putting out an IOC date, IMHO it seems too premature with all the issues outstanding, which only indicates to me that IOC will probably be later rather than sooner.

Let me ask again, how many years did it take for the F-22 to reach IOC from program start?


User currently offlineredflyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4315 posts, RR: 28
Reply 7, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 9858 times:

Quoting L-188 (Reply 5):
There is definitely a large contingent of anti-f35 people here.

It sort of reminds me of all the numnutz that where and still do dog the 787 as a waste of money and a failure

Not to go off-topic, but I think if Boeing had a crystal ball and could see into the future back in 2004, they would probably have held off on launching the 787 program and, even if they did launch it, the plane would be something quite different than what we see today. So those "numnutz" you refer to aren't really devoid of common sense as the label would otherwise imply.

Having said that, while I'm not necessarily an anti-F35'er, I sure do think this program was over-promised. Anytime you try to make something appease a multitude of competing interests then no one ends up happy.



I'm not a racist...I hate Biden, too.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 9763 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 6):
The title is taken from official IOC date estimates and discussions by two Non US F-35 program participants. Stated clear as day.

Someone better tell that to Japan, as they plan on introducing the F-35 in 2016.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 6):
State side, neither Lockheed, the US DoD nor any US forces have released an IOC date for the F-35 or given any official estimates. I am just stating the facts.

April 2016 for the USAF and USN was the last estimate by the DoD.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 9744 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Thread starter):
especially if there is no easy and quick solution to the B's arrestor hook problem

lol, other than the revised design they already have... F-35C will have to be canceled because of a little hook.

I really dont understand how people think every minor problem is a game ender? Most complicated aircraft ever built, everything doesnt work perfect first try, it is a failure.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 10, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 9733 times:

Quoting Oroka (Reply 9):
F-35C will have to be canceled because of a little hook.

Tell that to the British who may very well do that over that little hook, unless that little hook can be fixed to do it's job fairly quickly. The Brits will have a tough time commissioning a brand new aircraft carrier, the HMS Prince of Wales - and then mothball it awaiting aircraft.

It's not that everything must be perfect, there has been plenty of time built in to the program to iron things out - the problem is that the program is just no going anywhere near to plan - costs are already 50% overboard. There has to be a limit and the ultimate safeguard is pulling the plug.

[Edited 2012-02-06 21:05:26]

User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 9698 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 10):

Tell that to the British who may very well do that over that little hook, unless that little hook can be fixed to do it's job fairly quickly. The Brits will have a tough time commissioning a brand new aircraft carrier, the HMS Prince of Wales - and then mothball it awaiting aircraft.

So you are calling a mis-profiled tail hook causing the tail hook to skip a catastrophic disaster?

The whole business of getting arresting hooks to work is actually highly complex and difficult. The USN make it look easy because they are extremely good at it. Remember the USN and NAVAIR signed off on the initial F-35C tail hook.

I'll tell you what is a catastrophic disaster for a tail hook; how about the one that was on the RA-5 Vigilante? The RA-5's tail hook was known for separating from the aircraft entirely, and the handling characteristics of the RA-5 didn't help at all. The RA-5 had a high landing speed angle of attack and a tail hook design that if it slapped back into the airframe it could cause enough damage to cause the aircraft to be written off. This issue was never resolved during the service life of the RA-5, BTW.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 10):

It's not that everything must be perfect, there has been plenty of time built in to the program to iron things out - the problem is that the program is just no going anywhere near to plan - costs are already 50% overboard. There has to be a limit and the ultimate safeguard is pulling the plug.

So pulling the plug and restarting from scratch is your idea? And if we run into technical difficulties with the replacement, should we pull the plug again and start all over? And if that design encounters issues, pull the plug again?

See how utterly insane that idea is right now? Almost every fighter since World War II has encountered technical issues that were potentially major show stoppers. Turn back the clock 20, 30 or 40 years, the same types of criticisms leveled against the F-35 could have leveled against the then newest fighter under development. Unless you want to soldier on with obsolete gen 4 aircraft against foes with increasingly more capable aircraft, we would lose our technological edge against our opponents.

[Edited 2012-02-06 23:26:13]

User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 12, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 9695 times:
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another story out there
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Lockhe...-fighter-jet-rb-582392178.html?x=0


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 9647 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 10):
There has to be a limit and the ultimate safeguard is pulling the plug.

Government: Hey guys, F-35 is taking longer than expected and over cost (though that is industry norm right now), so, we are exercising the ultimate safeguard and canceling the F-35. Yeah, we know, we spent $66 000 000 000, and already built 63 of them, but no biggie, we have lots of money. So, we are going to spend another obscene amount of money to design a new fighter, which will take 10-15 years, probably $30b, and be pretty much the same in capacity as the F-35... just not the F-35, cause the F-35 is bad. Bad bad bad. We could just buy 40 year old fighter designs that have been upgraded, but the world will see us as sissies, and the Chinese and Russians would have better fighters than us. Yeah... we have to F-22, but only 187 of them, but those were behind schedule and over budget too.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 9572 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 11):
So you are calling a mis-profiled tail hook causing the tail hook to skip a catastrophic disaster?
OK, let's wait a few months and see how fast and cheap this little problem is fixed. The results will speak for themselves.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 11):
Unless you want to soldier on with obsolete gen 4 aircraft against foes with increasingly more capable aircraft, we would lose our technological edge against our opponents.

No, our F-22, B-2 and stealth UAVs are already in service and more in flight testing. Advanced radar and missile technologies as well. Let the others try and stop a blizzard of stealth attack UAVs coming in from various directions at once. I don't care how advanced the enemy fighters are, there will never be enough of them.

Quoting Oroka (Reply 13):
and the Chinese and Russians would have better fighters than us. Yeah... we have to F-22, but only 187 of them, but those were behind schedule and over budget too.

You do know, that in the air, the F-35 is inferior to the F-22, do you not? Everybody knows this.

Point is, many aircraft programs have been cancelled in the past. So where is the limit when things go way off the planned course? I only hear a "there-is-no-limit" argument, and that for me is not an option and not acceptable. That is irresponsible, IMHO.

[Edited 2012-02-07 13:37:21]

User currently offlinepowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 9547 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 14):
You do know, that in the air, the F-35 is inferior to the F-22, do you not? Everybody knows this.

You do know, that in the air, the F-35 has superior avionics than the F-22, do you not? Other than A2A and airshows, the Raptor is otherwise useless ATM.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 9507 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 14):
You do know, that in the air, the F-35 is inferior to the F-22, do you not? Everybody knows this.

I find it amusing that the superiority of the F-22 is the only thing in all that you defended against.


Yeah, I do know, but as stated... only 187, and they are turning into another B-2, too expensive to risk in combat. With BVR systems today, you can be flying a stealth tugboat, you still win. The F-35 has a stealth advantage with an air to air load, and with the right tactics, just about any opponent will discover there is a F-35 in the area when his missile warning starts screaming. The F-22 is the silver bullet, and the F-35 is the work horse. Legacy fighters, even the gen 4.5 ones, can just hold their own against a well trained crew in a modern Russian gen 4.5, the advantage is gone.

Killing the F-35 would doom the USAF and USN to being simply on par with the world, if that. There are superior F-15s and F-16s flying around than the USAF has.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 9458 times:

Quoting Oroka (Reply 16):
Yeah, I do know, but as stated... only 187, and they are turning into another B-2, too expensive to risk in combat.

Actually, less than 100 F-22's are operational or even considered combat ready due to ongoing technical and software issues...


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 9385 times:

Quoting Oroka (Reply 16):
I find it amusing that the superiority of the F-22 is the only thing in all that you defended against.

I am not the one defending anything. But glad you are amused regardless.

Quoting powerslide (Reply 15):
You do know, that in the air, the F-35 has superior avionics than the F-22, do you not?

No and neither do you, since both have important electronic capabilities (F-22) or planned capabilities (F-35) that are mostly classified. The F-35 helmet mounted avionics does not even operate yet and won't for years. Comparing future planned paper capabilities with current F-22 capabilities is apples and oranges, since future F-22 capabilities will improve by as well.

Quoting Oroka (Reply 16):
Killing the F-35 would doom the USAF and USN to being simply on par with the world, if that.

I think you vastly underestimate the USAF and USN. Tally up everything they already have, and it is mind boggling. Nobody else comes close. even if the F-35 is cancelled, there is plenty other stuff going on in development and the F-22 and B-2/B-52 will remain in service for many more decades.

I find it amusing that F-35 defenders think it is OK to tolerate program mismanagement without limit and just keep going no matter what. Wasting resources only makes our enemies happy and is exaclty what Osama Bin Laden said he wanted the Americans to do. We'll wind up with only a small number of very expensive planes, like the B-2 and F-22 programs before it. That's not bad in and of itself, but for the amount of money spent, it's far from optimal, that's what I'm criticizing.

Quoting powerslide (Reply 15):
Other than A2A and airshows, the Raptor is otherwise useless ATM.

You do know that the F-22 can deliver A2G munitions, do you not?


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 9274 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 18):

No and neither do you, since both have important electronic capabilities (F-22) or planned capabilities (F-35) that are mostly classified. The F-35 helmet mounted avionics does not even operate yet and won't for years. Comparing future planned paper capabilities with current F-22 capabilities is apples and oranges, since future F-22 capabilities will improve by as well.

The publicly known information is that the F-35's electronic systems are superior to the F-22 in both capabilities and expandability. The F-22's avionics system is at a technical dead end in terms of expandability; to add more capabilities would require significant development. There is talk of future F-22 upgrades revolving around taking systems from the F-35 and transplanting them into the F-22 because the F-35's systems are more easily upgradable and supportable.

And the helmet display is not a show stopper in any ways; they have 4 years to work out the latency issues.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 18):
I think you vastly underestimate the USAF and USN. Tally up everything they already have, and it is mind boggling. Nobody else comes close. even if the F-35 is cancelled, there is plenty other stuff going on in development and the F-22 and B-2/B-52 will remain in service for many more decades.

Name one program that isn't just a technology demonstrator or a paper project.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 18):
You do know that the F-22 can deliver A2G munitions, do you not?

Very limited A2G capabilities that was tacked on after the fact. It can't carry anything other than JDAM's or SDB's. F-35 will be cleared to use a more extensive list of weapons, including JSOW, JSM, Brimstone, Paveway, and various cluster and dumb bombs.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 9206 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
The publicly known information is that the F-35's electronic systems are superior to the F-22

The publicly known information as to the F-35 capabilities is that it is a non existent weapon. It only exists on paper..........grrrrrrrrr scary! The F-22 does exist today, this very second. So please.....

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
Name one program that isn't just a technology demonstrator or a paper project.

I said, tally up everything they have, as in RIGHT NOW. Nobody comes close. Who comes close?

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
And the helmet display is not a show stopper

Ok. let us see the F-35 fly a mission without it, if it is not a show stopper.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
"...(F-22) It can't carry anything other than JDAM's or SDB's. ..

Thanks for admitting you statement re the F-22 was 100% wrong. You discredit yourself by making such clearly false statements. You are seeing what you want to see, rather than the truth.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
F-35 will be cleared to use a more extensive list of weapons,

On paper......just like the list price, schedule, etc.....come on, is there no limit?

[Edited 2012-02-09 01:16:19]

[Edited 2012-02-09 01:18:58]

User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 21, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 9200 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
Name one program that isn't just a technology demonstrator or a paper project.

You do know what the definition of "in development" means, do you not? The F-35 for example fits that definition, its capabilities are on paper only and in the future, reliant on other future paper technologies, etc.... Unless it is operational, it is probably "in development".

Name one capability the F-35 has right now, this very second, that the F-22 doesn't right now?



[Edited 2012-02-09 01:31:38]

User currently offlineKC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12128 posts, RR: 51
Reply 22, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 9141 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 6):
Let me ask again, how many years did it take for the F-22 to reach IOC from program start?

After the fly-off in the late 1980s between the UF-22 and the YF-23, the intial contract was signed for the F-22 in 1991, the first production airplane began construction in 1997 and delivered in 1998 as a flight test airplane, finally delivered to the USAF in 2002. IOC was late in 2005.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 9098 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 21):
Name one capability the F-35 has right now, this very second, that the F-22 doesn't right now?

How about a capacity the F-22 doesnt have right now, and the F-15 / F-16 / F/A-18 does? The ability to fill more than 13 squadrons!

Oh come on, you know that is a lame argument. Yes, the F-35 is not currently operational, that does not mean that all the things it is designed to do wont happen. The F-35 does not have its full capabilities AT THIS SECOND, seeing how it is in development... it will be completed and fully capable.

The F-35 has hard points, now it just comes down to software, no different than the F-22 being rated to carry JDAMs and SDBs. Maybe if they claimed there would be a laser cannon installed... that may be a bit of a stretch. Strapping bombs on an attack aircraft may just be plausible.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 24, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 9074 times:
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Whether or not the F-35 lives up to it's billing, a main concern is spending millions building aircraft that will need either extensive mod work to be operational or at least will sit on a runway somewhere waiting for software design, test, rework and finally in 4-5 years installation. Cutting the initial "production" rate substantially will lessen the costs without affecting the end game. In the end only a portion of the projected planes will be built because we will just plain run out of funds.

Before the first become fully operational, we will be parking these early test and training planes in the desert. Does it make sense to build so many substandard planes?


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 25, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 9099 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 22):
After the fly-off in the late 1980s between the UF-22 and the YF-23, the intial contract was signed for the F-22 in 1991, the first production airplane began construction in 1997 and delivered in 1998 as a flight test airplane, finally delivered to the USAF in 2002. IOC was late in 2005.

Thank you. From first flight (1997) to IOC (2005) in 8 years. That was wildly cutting edge program too.

Compare F-35
First flight in 2006 and IOC officially estimated as 2020 by two partner nations. 14 years. And estimates given in the F-35 program have shown a pattern of being wildly inaccurate to date. So fingers crossed that this time is different.

This program will provide a very small punch for the money spent on it, because we'll wind up with so few of them. Our time and resources will have been allocated in a very inefficient way.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 26, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 9087 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 25):
Thank you. From first flight (1997) to IOC (2005) in 8 years. That was wildly cutting edge program too.

Now it's filled with all sorts of serviceability issues because they didn't spend the time to shake out all the bugs. I'm glad the F35 program is taking the time it is, it will reduce the amount of problems it will have in service, when it is needed the most.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 25):
Our time and resources will have been allocated in a very inefficient way.

Pretty much the moto for the entire US government.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 27, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 9146 times:
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Quoting Powerslide (Reply 26):
when it is needed the most.

nobody has proved a need.. there is a desire, there is a fantasy, there is the testosterone based bigger, faster, more capable, there is this fear of being second best to the nightmares of paranoid minds. But there is no proven need, other than we're wearing out what we have chasing ghosts. Military might is an endless hollow game.

if this project sat idle for 15 years it would really be no big deal.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 28, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 9145 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 27):
nobody has proved a need.. there is a desire, there is a fantasy, there is the testosterone based bigger, faster, more capable, there is this fear of being second best to the nightmares of paranoid minds. But there is no proven need, other than we're wearing out what we have chasing ghosts. Military might is an endless hollow game.

You either have the biggest edge on your opponent you can or you just disband the military all together. There is no in between. Doing it half-assed like the anti-JSF fanbois want to happen with old-aged airframes stretched to their design limit doesn't do any good. Every fighter program had its critics, but they were quickly put in their place when it reached service. Thankfully, all the general public can do is whine.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 29, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 9137 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 20):
The publicly known information as to the F-35 capabilities is that it is a non existent weapon. It only exists on paper..........grrrrrrrrr scary! The F-22 does exist today, this very second. So please.....

It flies right now. Progression of flight testing is on going.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 20):
I said, tally up everything they have, as in RIGHT NOW. Nobody comes close. Who comes close?

You mean all of those fighters that are suffering from structural issues right now? I've listed the issues with the USAF, USN, and USMC fleets before; not going to rehash them all. If no replacement is bought soon, the entire US tactical air force fleet is set to implode.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 20):
Ok. let us see the F-35 fly a mission without it, if it is not a show stopper.

It's flying right now. They are using an alternative helmet right now for flight testing, and it is working fine.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 20):
Thanks for admitting you statement re the F-22 was 100% wrong. You discredit yourself by making such clearly false statements. You are seeing what you want to see, rather than the truth.

State where I said the F-22 could not drop bombs.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 20):
On paper......just like the list price, schedule, etc.....come on, is there no limit?

JSOW already had a check fit down a few months back, and so has JDAM and SDB.

Quoting kanban (Reply 27):
if this project sat idle for 15 years it would really be no big deal.

If this project sat idle, the USAF's tactical air force fleet would implode due to airframes timing out. The fleet implosion is already starting, with high hour F-15's and F-16's being sent to the desert. In the past decade, there has been a major grounding that lasted more than a month of almost 1/3 of the USAF's tactical fighter force due to age-related issues.
http://cdn.govexec.com/interstitial....ley-transcript-part-one%2F25643%2F

Quote:
“The F-15s and F-16s were designed and built in the late ‘60s and ‘70s. Some of them were produced up until the early ‘80s. But they’ve led a pretty hard life of 17 years of combat. So you have to replace them with something, because we were continuing to restrict the airplanes. In the F-15 case, we’ve got the airplane restricted to 1.5 Mach. It was designed to be a 2.5 Mach airplane. We’ve got it limited on maneuvering restrictions because we’ve had tail cracks, fuselage cracks, cracks in the wings. The problem with that is – and Mike Wynne uses this analogy – it’s almost like going to the Indy 500 race practicing all the way up until Memorial Day at 60 miles an hour, and then on game day, accelerating the car out to 200 miles an hour. It’s not the time to be doing that on game day.

So in our training models and in our scenarios, we’re limiting these airplanes because they’re restricted and getting old. So there’s two parts to the recapitalization of the fighter inventory. The first part is the existing stuff is old and it’s getting broke, and it’s getting harder to get it out of depot on time. And our availability rates and our in-commission rates are going down. The ability to generate the sorties on those old airplanes is in the wrong direction.”

The USN and USMC is no better; The USMC already has some USMC Hornets are reaching service life limits, which have risen to 9,000 – 10,000 flight hours after the full Service Life Extension Program. Naval Air Systems Command is adamant that the USN and USMC legacy Hornet fleet should not exceed that limit because of fatigue issues. The USN is also burning through the airframe hours on the Super Hornet as well; a number of Super Hornets have already it 3,000 hours, half the airframe design life expectancy.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 30, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 9131 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 29):
You mean all of those fighters that are suffering from structural issues right now? I've listed the issues with the USAF, USN, and USMC fleets before; not going to rehash them all. If no replacement is bought soon, the entire US tactical air force fleet is set to implode.

I sure hope the few hundred F-35s we'll get can carry the entire load, because that's all we're going to get. You are continuously under the erroneous notion that there is no new aircraft or new alternative to the F-35, as if that were the thing in existence. It's only true if you want it to be true, not because it is.

And you forget everything the DoD has right now and will have through 2030. Instead you look at what it will not have. You do not guage the needs nor the strength on what you will not have.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 29):
State where I said the F-22 could not drop bombs.
Quoting powerslide (Reply 15):
Other than A2A and airshows, the Raptor is otherwise useless ATM.

I meant Powerslide, my apologies. He made that statement.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 31, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 9125 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 30):
You are continuously under the erroneous notion that there is no new aircraft or new alternative to the F-35, as if that were the thing in existence. It's only true if you want it to be true, not because it is.

What other new aircraft is currently being developed as an alternative to the F35?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 30):
I meant Powerslide, my apologies. He made that statement.

Putting words in my mouth I see. I didn't say it can't, I said it's not designed to or will not be the first choice. That is what the F-35 is for, coming in to destroy ground installations after the F-22 clears the airspace.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 32, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 9117 times:
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Quoting Powerslide (Reply 28):
You either have the biggest edge on your opponent you can or you just disband the military all together.


Of course you have to have an opponent.. even if it's dust balls under your bed... The US has been proving since it invaded Iraq and Afghanistan that the "biggest edge" theory is bogus when it comes to long term results. A neighbor (who served in both countries) commented that building schools and medical facilities proved more stabilizing than sending 10 fighters into blow up one Toyota with 'alleged' hostiles and 20 noncombatants..
It's also interesting that the Canadians (well two anyway) seem to have more passion for this than many of the US citizens who are paying for it.

The quote above also seems typical of youth in that everything is all or nothing. In reality there are many shades between. Now if the US military is so worried about wearing aircraft out playing war games and doing airshows, maybe they need to stop. Secondly why is the service life so small? Reminds me of a prototype tank that could only go 60 miles between major overhauls...


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 33, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 9107 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 30):
I sure hope the few hundred F-35s we'll get can carry the entire load, because that's all we're going to get.

Retiring older, more maintenance intensive fighters will save money in the operations and maintenance budget, which will help pay for F-35's.

Also, F-35 is a major US DoD and Pentagon budgetary item, one that has significant budgetary priority. The US government will sacrifice other defense items before even touching the F-35 programme. The White House, the Senate, and Congress all understand that the US tactical fighter force is rapidly becoming unserviceable

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 30):
You are continuously under the erroneous notion that there is no new aircraft or new alternative to the F-35, as if that were the thing in existence.

Name one alternative fighter program that can fulfill the needs of all three services, either in production or under development. Name one.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 30):
And you forget everything the DoD has right now and will have through 2030. Instead you look at what it will not have. You do not guage the needs nor the strength on what you will not have.

It's pretty clear to me; either F-35's or the size of the US tactical air force shrinks to roughly a hundred serviceable and combat ready F-22's, and maybe some USN Super Hornets, or nothing else because everything else is too obsolete and worn out.

Quoting kanban (Reply 32):
Now if the US military is so worried about wearing aircraft out playing war games and doing airshows, maybe they need to stop

We've been over this before and you have clearly not listened, so I will repeat myself AGAIN; the major driver of Western air superiority has been the extensive emphasis on training of our pilots compared to our opponents.
If The F35 Gets The Axe What Are The Options? (by Eagleboy Sep 22 2011 in Military Aviation & Space Flight)

In situations where hardware-wise, both opponents are equal, if one pilot has better honed skills, they will dominate the fight. The various Arab-Israeli wars, and practically every war in which airplanes have taken part have shown that the pilot that is the winner in a fight in large part is predicted by how one trained one's pilots are, when the equipment and technology are fairly equal. Better trained pilots are better in combat as they can fly more aggressively, and maximize the performance of their equipment. In war, it is not about being fair or equal, you want every single advantage, be it technology or training to win.

The bottom line is that you can't keep an effective airforce without real life training. At the very minimum your training level has to match that of your closest rival.

Quoting kanban (Reply 32):
Secondly why is the service life so small? Reminds me of a prototype tank that could only go 60 miles between major overhauls...

Gee, trying to design a fighter that can pull 9G's, carry tons of weapons and fuel, while being highly maneuverable and fast all in as light as package as possible puts a damper on design service life. Sure, you can beef up components, but you have to compromise somewhere else. It's all about design compromises, and fighter aircraft designers place less emphasis on service life to focus on other factors. Other Western and non-Western fighters likewise have fairly short design service lives.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 34, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 8997 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 33):
The bottom line is that you can't keep an effective airforce without real life training. At the very minimum your training level has to match that of your closest rival.

The paranoia of a boogie man out there is what keeps this BS escalating. If there is no boogie man, there isn't a need for a massive military and a whole lot of war mongers would be out of business. The cold war ended. Most hostilities today are tribal affairs that go back centuries.

Wars have been fought for material resources, land, religion, spite over alleged slurs, but who wants Canada or the US? Do we need to be the policeman of the world? NO. This will sound harsh, however if a couple small countries want to wipe themselves out ... have at it. They've got the equipment to do it without us interfering.

When we speak of rivals, there are none militarily... there may be rival equipment, but the point is other equipment doesn't equate to a territorial threat. It may mean that some little country with Russian technology goes head to head with another using Chinese technology, and possibly involves a third using US technology... Do we have to play our technology must win even though the winner is a despot. Now if you're saying all this preparation is to protect our friends.. maybe it's time our friends stopped being bullies while relying on us to back them unconditionally.

So in my mind a 50% US reduction of "military might" would be a good start.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 35, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 8911 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 34):
The cold war ended. Most hostilities today are tribal affairs that go back centuries.

In many aspects the Cold War made things simpler as solidified who was the enemy and one can design their force plan to counter.

Training as mentioned is EXTREMELY important to pilots. Many times, fighter pilots are training just for proficiency, to make sure that they can still fly the airplane and be comfortable flying a certain aircraft.

The NATO minimum standard is 180-200 hours of flight time per year. Even then, that's barely enough to maintain currency, not for competency. Tthe fatal crash of a RAF Tornado F3 in Glen Kinglas in 2009 was determined to be pilot's error, which was caused by a lack of recent flying hours in the type. I can point to a number of other crashes where pilot proficiency was an issue.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 36, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8902 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 34):
So in my mind a 50% US reduction of "military might" would be a good start.

You are voting for Ron Paul, aren't you.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 37, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 8893 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 34):
Most hostilities today are tribal affairs that go back centuries.
Quoting kanban (Reply 34):
When we speak of rivals, there are none militarily

That is the truth.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 33):
The US government will sacrifice other defense items before even touching the F-35 programme.

Yes, there would be no alternative if they want to get the number projected.


Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 33):
Name one alternative fighter program that can fulfill the needs of all three services, either in production or under development. Name one.

Not one but several and cheaper (like rewinged A-10s, starting in 2011): The following will either be in service for many decades to come or can be bought new: Rafale, JSF, F-15SE, Superhornet, UAVs, Cruise Missiles, AWACS, Jstar, B-2 (till 2050 at least), B-52 (till 2040, imagine if re engined), F-22, A-10 (till 2030), submarines with cruise missiles...and I am sure there are many attack weapons I forgot or that will be available by 2020. It's already mind boggling what we have.

But yeah, we'll be defenseless to the world without the F-35 - it's an illusion. Actually we'll be less effective and threatening with it, because it is so expensive, even to operate, and will cause compromises due to these costs. Wanna strike stealthy, a few B-2s can do what a fleet of F-35s can't and they're flying today. Once the air is clear, even B-52's can operate safely. And one B-52 or B-2 can unload several times what one F-35 can, with many times more range to boot.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 38, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 8770 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
Rafale

With a per unit cost approaching $100 million dollars, and with various systems at a technical dead end, yeah right.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
Superhornet,

GAO says $106.1 million dollars a copy, excluding any proposed upgrades. The Navy is already eating away at airframe hours to the point where a good chunk of the fleet has already reached 50% of designed life expectancy.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
F-15SE,

Boeing says $100 million dollars, excluding developmental costs. The Navy and USMC can't use F-15's as they are not carrier capable. Last time I checked that is a 4 year "buy-to-delivery" timeline. The current F-15E line has a max production capacity capped at somewhere around 12-14 units a year, without a massive upgrade in facilities and infrastructure. How many F-15Es would be available by 2018? Given the Slam Eagle's current price and production-rate, I'd just as soon restart F-22 production as an alternative.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
UAVs

With a accident rate 10 times that of normal airplanes, and there has never been a single UAV capable of air to air interceptions.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
Cruise Missile

So you are willing to expend a million dollar cruise missile that is one time use and have limited stocks of compared a $5000 guided bomb that can be carried by a fighter, and that fighter is reusable. See the issue here?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
AWACS

Not a fighter, and the platform is reaching 30 years of service.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
Jstar

Not a fighter, and the base airframe (the Boeing 707) has been kicking around for almost 50 years. The airframes, BTW were bought used from commercial sources or from foreign militaries.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
B-2 (till 2050 at least)

We only got 21 in existence. Also known for being maintenance intensive, and can't defend itself.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
B-52 (till 2040, imagine if re engined

They are slowly retiring B-52's one by one because the airframes are getting too old to maintain. Metal fatigue and corrosion are eating away at them.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
F-22,

Less than 100 are serviceable or combat ready due to various technical issues.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
A-10 (till 2030)

We will see how long the USAF decides to actually keep them. They are cutting A-10 squadrons right now.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
submarines with cruise missiles

Each submarine costs billions of dollars, and their cruise missiles costs millions of dollars. They are one time use weapons, and once a submarine is out of missiles, they can't do anything. Not good for a sustained campaign.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
But yeah, we'll be defenseless to the world without the F-35 - it's an illusion

The USAF will be down to less than 100 serviceable F-22's and the USN will be down to 500 Super Hornets that are getting up there in wear and tear.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
Once the air is clear, even B-52's can operate safely.

In today's environment of more integrated and networked air defence systems, don't think so.


Any fighter with a new capability (eg F-15E+) itself would have to go through some kind of IOT&E. Given that first delivery of F-15E+s for the USAF if we ordered today would be in FY2017 and add a year of mini-IOT&E, not many would be ready before 2018.

Add on top to that the issue of F-35A's IOC. The main driver of the IOC date is not development, but the OT&E community causing issues. Just like we saw with the timeline to start pilot training (where the OT&E community wanted to introduce a 6-8 month delay of pilot training due to them not liking the current ejection seat), the testing community swung the timeline-pendulum to the far right (from being a best-case timeline to a worst-case). Given that the F-35 has done well in the last 18 month of test flights and is currently about 10% ahead of schedule (in flights and check points), I think we will see that date brought back down to 2017 or even 2016 in the next few years.

I hate to say that the OT&E community is causing unnecessary delays, but there is a precedence with past programs with the testing team causing major delays.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 39, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 8663 times:

ThePointblank, you see what you want to see. You fool nobody. Sure, everything we have is junk, incapable and falling apart and our sole salvation rests on the F-35 - sure.

A miracle we were able to carry out all the strike missions to date. ANd keep striking in Pakistan with our UAVs.

Using your logic, the F-35 is crap because it doesn't have a cigar holder, will wear out, needs to be rearmed between missions and needs to be maintained, good Lord.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 40, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 8626 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 38):
In today's environment of more integrated and networked air defence systems, don't think so.


However that's not who we choose to pick on... if they don't ride donkeys, Toyota pickups, have a habit of celebrating by shooting into the air or have already been over run by people wanting a change of regime, they are deemed too advanced for our attention. So we let secondaries do the dirty work when they can muster public opinion. We spend bilions "protecting" allies who have no aggressors at their gates with huge bases.. We are tired of it. Germany, Japan, Korea, NATO should stand on their own with their own defense budget.


User currently offlineHaveBlue From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 2098 posts, RR: 1
Reply 41, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 8577 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 38):
Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 37):
B-2 (till 2050 at least)

We only got 21 in existence. Also known for being maintenance intensive, and can't defend itself.

After the loss of one in Guam, we are down to 20.



Here Here for Severe Clear!
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 42, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 8553 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 40):
However that's not who we choose to pick on... if they don't ride donkeys, Toyota pickups, have a habit of celebrating by shooting into the air or have already been over run by people wanting a change of regime, they are deemed too advanced for our attention. So we let secondaries do the dirty work when they can muster public opinion. We spend bilions "protecting" allies who have no aggressors at their gates with huge bases.. We are tired of it. Germany, Japan, Korea, NATO should stand on their own with their own defense budget.

Nice rant, but stay on topic, this isn't the place to discuss US foreign policy.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 39):
Sure, everything we have is junk, incapable and falling apart and our sole salvation rests on the F-35 - sure.

I don't care what the US does with the F-35, but multiple other partner nations have chosen it to replace their ageing fighter fleet. For them, there are no real alternatives, you can only upgrade what you have for so long until the airframe starts to break apart.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 43, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 8546 times:

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 41):
After the loss of one in Guam, we are down to 20.

Even 1 B-2 can level multiple small towns in one mission, like the B-52 can - and we have a bunch of those as well. Despite what Thepointblank says, the weapons below will all stay in service to at least 2030 and beyond. That's plenty of firepower:

B-52s will remain till 2030 or 2040
A-10s are being rewinged right now and will remain till 2030, at least
B-2s will remain till at least 2040/50
F-22s for decades
UAVs will continuously get better and are invaluable in places like Pakistan right now
Jstar and AWACS will remain till at least 2030
KC-135/KC-10 (till at least 2030) to support the above in long range missions
Submarines with cruise missiles - we already bought and paid for those and used them in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan
NATO forces - we need to act like in Libya, with others sharing the burden - you leave all those capabilities out

All of the above are paid for with operating costs well known. We're good for the next 20 years - at least, even if we absolutely nothing for the next 10 years. To replace Navy jet's the Rafale or Superhornets would be available at half the acquisition and operating costs of the F-35 and could be bought at slow paces, only as needed. That would save a ton of money.

We could also slowly reduce the number of carriers, delaying the need to replace the current Navy fighters for many more decades.

Better yet, we should eventually scarp the aircraft carriers altogether. That concept is obsolete, they can not hide and are too vulnerable now. The Iranians fly right over them with small UAVs, imagine if they were hostile, like Kamikaze UAVs or dropped something? F-35's wouldn't help there, they'd be toast. Let the Indians and Chinese waster their resources on those. We could easily sink any carrier before it gets halfway to Hawaii, from land based sources, if we wanted to.

http://www.spacewar.com/reports/Iran...ft_Carrier_On_Gulf_Patrol_999.html

Any campaign in a far away land can be accomplished by the above weapons with air tankers. No problem and far cheaper than operating carriers and their aircraft.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwJwaqrTW3Y
Not mentioned is that air to air refueling capabilities are planned, meaning they would not need carriers to operate from.

[Edited 2012-02-12 13:06:29]

User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 44, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 8538 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):

Your entire argument revolves around cost. What you fail to realize is that it costs more to operate older fleets of ageing fighters. Your entire belief is clouded around the whole anti-jsf media propaganda.


Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):
Better yet, we should eventually scarp the aircraft carriers altogether. That concept is obsolete, they can not hide and are too vulnerable now.

Yes, battle groups are sinking around the world, they are extremely easy targets.   I love it when civies think they have the slightest idea when it comes to military anything.  


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 45, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 8536 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 44):
What you fail to realize is that it costs more to operate older fleets of ageing fighters

Total nonsense. Operating costs of the F-35 will be much higher than the legacy fighters, before even counting the acquisition costs. It is far cheaper to maintain and operate aging fighter than acquire and operate new ones, especially new ones with even higher operating costs from day 1, than those being replaced. B-2 and F-22 also have higher actual operating costs than anyone predicted.

Resources are limited and must be allocated wisely, not recklessly.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-0...ng-costs-may-reach-1-trillion.html
Once upon a time, the estimate for the same costs was $420 Billion.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 44):
Yes, battle groups are sinking around the world

None are sinking, because we are not at war with any country with those capabilities, not because they are unsinkable. Come down to reality.

[Edited 2012-02-12 13:46:25]

[Edited 2012-02-12 13:53:56]

[Edited 2012-02-12 13:55:12]

User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 46, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 8393 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 39):
ThePointblank, you see what you want to see. You fool nobody. Sure, everything we have is junk, incapable and falling apart and our sole salvation rests on the F-35 - sure.

Um, where the heck have you been? The entire US Tactical air force fleet is going to implode in the next few years due to age issues.
The only 5th generation fighter jet under development or production is the F-35. There is no other alternative

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):
All of the above are paid for with operating costs well known. We're good for the next 20 years - at least, even if we absolutely nothing for the next 10 years. To replace Navy jet's the Rafale or Superhornets would be available at half the acquisition and operating costs of the F-35 and could be bought at slow paces, only as needed. That would save a ton of money.

No, we are not because, the airframes for some of the other systems are wearing out, or many of the components are obsolete. You know there are only so many 707's that are compatible left in the boneyards that the US Military can pick over for spare parts, right?

I will remind you that the JSTARS airframes were purchased used; in fact, a couple of them are ex-Canadian Air Force aircraft that served for 30 years prior to the disposal. I think the USAF has a bird that suffered a landing gear collapse prior to us selling the fleet off.

I will repeat what I said about Super Hornet: 106.1 million dollars, per aircraft, according to the GAO, excluding any additional planned upgrades. I will also mention that the Super Hornet has limited future growth potential; for example, do you know where they are placing the planned IRST sensor on the Super Hornet? They are putting it on the center-line external fuel tank because there's no room elsewhere.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):
Submarines with cruise missiles - we already bought and paid for those and used them in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan

So you plan on using a million dollar missile from a multi-billion dollar submarine, thousands of miles away, that once fired, cannot be recalled or aborted? Not to mention that once your submarine has shot all of its missiles, it can't do much else for land attack. Cruise missiles are fine for the first strike; its sustaining the attack that's the problem.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):
e could also slowly reduce the number of carriers, delaying the need to replace the current Navy fighters for many more decades.

Ain't happening, the Pentagon and the White House are focused on maintaining the current carrier fleet numbers, other programs (excluding F-35) be damned. There is only 1 yard building super carriers in the US, and that's Northrop Grumman's Newport News Shipbuilding facility. If that yard is idled or is closed for extended periods, there goes the ability to build and repair the USN carrier fleet due to lost institutional memory.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 43):
Better yet, we should eventually scarp the aircraft carriers altogether. That concept is obsolete, they can not hide and are too vulnerable now. The Iranians fly right over them with small UAVs, imagine if they were hostile, like Kamikaze UAVs or dropped something? F-35's wouldn't help there, they'd be toast. Let the Indians and Chinese waster their resources on those. We could easily sink any carrier before it gets halfway to Hawaii, from land based sources, if we wanted to.

I'm glad you are not a military planner, because you do realize how much you sound like a troll here? You don't even know half the story, and yet you outright declare carrier aviation is dead.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 45):
It is far cheaper to maintain and operate aging fighter than acquire and operate new ones, especially new ones with even higher operating costs from day 1, than those being replaced.

Yes, spend millions of dollars on SLEP's for aging and increasingly obsolete aircraft for only very small increases in service lives... your line of thinking is like owning a car. You are the owner who is willing to sink hundreds of dollars into a old car that needs a new exhaust system, new engine and transmission, and yet the body is rusting out. Time to bite the bullet and replace the car with a new one because any more investment is just wasted for a very small increase in service life.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 47, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 8383 times:
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Quoting Powerslide (Reply 42):
For them, there are no real alternatives


so they and we go buy these state of the art fighters our "enemies" supposed have that are invincible to everything but the F-35. I know ... Hey Russia, (or China) we need a temp truce so you can send us spare parts...   


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 48, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 8335 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 46):
You know there are only so many 707's that are compatible left in the boneyards that the US Military can pick over for spare parts, right?

I will remind you that the JSTARS airframes were purchased used; in fact, a couple of them are ex-Canadian Air Force aircraft that served for 30 years prior to the disposal.

You have no idea what you're talking about. The question is are they airworthy till 2030 or not? And secondly is it economical to keep them that way? The USAF says yes to both and so does the GOA reports I've read. You are wrong and they are right, sorry. I know it does not compute for you.

If it weren't way way more economical to keep old frames flying and do SLEP like programs, they wouldn't be done and would be replaced with new aircraft instead every single time. Simple as that. But you simply continue to believe the falsehood that it's cheaper to replace old with new frames, when the opposite is true by a very wide margin. Read some of the GOA reports on this subject to enlighten yourself on this subject.

Just think. Why do you think this has been done with so many different frames? C-141/B-52/C-5/A-10/F-18/F-16 etc............the list goes on. Do you really think the DoD is that stupid? By your logic all these programs should not be going on and the frames just replaces with new ones. If money were not object, yes, But it is far cheaper to keep the old birds flying.

Regarding the 707 based weapons, the result is that the 1950's frames have had the highest fleet availability rating out of all aircraft in the USAF fleet, per GOA reports I've read. It's not what you believe and want to "see", it's what the truth is.

Your statements and beliefs (including those of Italian government mystery loans), are counter to reality.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 46):
So you plan on using a million dollar missile from a multi-billion dollar submarine, thousands of miles away, that once fired, cannot be recalled or aborted? Not to mention that once your submarine has shot all of its missiles, it can't do much else for land attack. Cruise missiles are fine for the first strike; its sustaining the attack that's the problem.

Allow me:

1. Submarines are already acquired, are operational, so have no acquisition costs
2. Cruise missiles, same already acquired
3. Once an F-35 drops a bomb, it can not be recalled, a cruise missile can (look it up)
4. F-35 needs to be reloaded, just like a sub - but a sub carries as much firepower as a fleet of F-35s
5. A sub can always be reloaded at sea or at the closest base, not necessarily in the USA
6. For sustaining an attack we already have better weapons than the F-35 (B-2, B-52, UAVs, A-10, etc..)
7. This is without even counting a single old fighter F-15/16/18, which we do have around for a decade or two
8. This is all without counting the F-22, which can drop JDAMS and a few more A2G weapons - in full stealth

- But you maintain the USA would be helpless without the F-35?

As to carriers, do you really think carriers are unsinkable these days, much less in the years to come? Do you not know about the sophisticated mini subs (20 people or so) and torpedoes that are either operational or coming, developed by several countries, not in NATO? These coming subs will be much harder to detect, going as far as creating a false magnetic field to blend in with the background magnetic field, whatever it may be, like a fish changing colors. They also do not run on nuclear, but on Fuel Cells, fueled by Diesel or Gas, were they can operate 2-3 weeks underwater at full speed and quieter than nuclear, as there is no heat, steam or turbine or large bearings involved, just an electric engine, without a shaft or bearings to the prop. It's much cheaper and quieter. Basically no moving parts for propulsion. They will also have more stealthy Sonar signature and shape and be smaller in general.

With radar, satellite, UAV, sub and other technology, it is simply not possible to hide a carrier or it's movements anymore.

And the torpedoes are getting bigger ranges, faster and more explosive. Perhaps you want to continue building battle ships.....I am glad you are not a military planner as well.



[Edited 2012-02-14 00:43:52]

User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 49, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 8327 times:

http://www.usni.org/magazines/procee...s-sea-carrier-invulnerability-myth

Some more about carrier vulnerability here. Where would the F-35 land?


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 50, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 8134 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):

If it weren't way way more economical to keep old frames flying and do SLEP like programs, they wouldn't be done and would be replaced with new aircraft instead every single time. Simple as that. But you simply continue to believe the falsehood that it's cheaper to replace old with new frames, when the opposite is true by a very wide margin. Read some of the GOA reports on this subject to enlighten yourself on this subject.

Just think. Why do you think this has been done with so many different frames? C-141/B-52/C-5/A-10/F-18/F-16 etc............the list goes on. Do you really think the DoD is that stupid? By your logic all these programs should not be going on and the frames just replaces with new ones. If money were not object, yes, But it is far cheaper to keep the old birds flying.

It's a matter of diminishing returns on aircraft that are increasingly obsolete. I will point out that the USN has stated that they do not believe the Super Hornet will ensure operational parity with the various Fulcrum and Flanker variants floating around in the next decade, despite the planned upgrades. And that's with a fairly new 4th generation platform, let alone compared to the F-16, and F-15. On a number of fighter types, there no option for a SLEP; for example, the USMC is adamant that their Hornets cannot fly beyond 9000-10,000 hours even after structural upgrades. The 10,000 flight hour limit is accomplished though a deep inspection and refurbishment. It’s accompanied by detailed record-keeping, and a constant juggling act among the squadrons. NAVAIR quarterly modification review literally makes the decisions every quarter on, bureau number by bureau number, what aircraft will be assigned to what units, based heavily on flight hour and maintenance issues. They are literally juggling aircraft between squadrons to even out wear and tear on a monthly basis.

The US tactical air force is getting increasingly worn out, and no amount of SLEP's can keep the birds airborne or restored to their former glory. You are also looking at costly avionics upgrades as well; often the avionics themselves cost more than the actual flying parts of the airplane themselves.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):

1. Submarines are already acquired, are operational, so have no acquisition costs

You mean the 30+ year old LA boats, the handful of Seawolf's, and Ohio SSGN's and the couple of Virgina's?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
2. Cruise missiles, same already acquired

You mean the very limited stocks of cruise missiles the US military has? Get into an actual shooting war, and we would probably deplete the US military's stocks of Tomahawk cruise missiles in less than a week.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
2. Cruise missiles, same already acquired
3. Once an F-35 drops a bomb, it can not be recalled, a cruise missile can (look it up)

A F-35 is right then and there to make a decision to drop. A weapons technician 2000km away in a submarine can't make the same level of decisions someone on sight can.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
. F-35 needs to be reloaded, just like a sub - but a sub carries as much firepower as a fleet of F-35s

Except a fleet of F-35's can continue the assault with cheap bombs, and perform air superiority missions.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
5. A sub can always be reloaded at sea or at the closest base, not necessarily in the USA

Replenishment at sea is always tricky, and no submarine has ever been replenished at sea. When a sub needs more weapons, it has to find a friendly port with the appropriate facilities, and it can be a week's transit or more.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
6. For sustaining an attack we already have better weapons than the F-35 (B-2, B-52, UAVs, A-10, etc..)

You mean the very small numbers of those aircraft that we have? If North Korea say goes off their rockers and attacks the South, there won't be enough aircraft under your scenario to fight North Korea, and perform other critical strategic defence duties, and training.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
7. This is without even counting a single old fighter F-15/16/18, which we do have around for a decade or two

The F/A-18's serviceability is about as good as it will ever get; serviceability will decrease over time as aircraft time out. The F-15 has been given placard limits (pilots cannot exceed Mach 1.5 or pull more than 7G's under any circumstances other than full blown war or to prevent a accident) to prevent aircraft from disintegrating in mid air. I believe General Corley, former commander of Air Combat Command said in an interview "I have a fleet that is 100 percent fatigued, and 40 percent of that has bad parts. The long-term future of the F-15 is in question. We don't have a full and healthy fleet, so we've gotten behind on training missions, instructor certifications, classes and exercises." Ditto the F-16. The ever decreasing availability of existing platforms due to age related issues is becoming a major concern with the USAF.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
This is all without counting the F-22, which can drop JDAMS and a few more A2G weapons - in full stealth

You mean the less than 100 combat capable F-22's available, right? Have you looked at the serviceability numbers of the F-22 yet? Abysmal is putting things lightly. Not to mention the numerous software and technical glitches that still exist with the F-22 that have yet to be ironed out, well after IOC.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):

- But you maintain the USA would be helpless without the F-35?

If you think the US can be defended by less than 100 combat capable F-22's, then we have a problem.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
As to carriers, do you really think carriers are unsinkable these days, much less in the years to come? Do you not know about the sophisticated mini subs (20 people or so) and torpedoes that are either operational or coming, developed by several countries, not in NATO? These coming subs will be much harder to detect, going as far as creating a false magnetic field to blend in with the background magnetic field, whatever it may be, like a fish changing colors. They also do not run on nuclear, but on Fuel Cells, fueled by Diesel or Gas, were they can operate 2-3 weeks underwater at full speed and quieter than nuclear, as there is no heat, steam or turbine or large bearings involved, just an electric engine, without a shaft or bearings to the prop. It's much cheaper and quieter. Basically no moving parts for propulsion. They will also have more stealthy Sonar signature and shape and be smaller in general.

Overblown. Any real military expert will laugh at your suggestion. Any perceived superiority of submarines against aircraft carriers is only found in highly scripted exercises that is not reflective of real combat conditions.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
With radar, satellite, UAV, sub and other technology, it is simply not possible to hide a carrier or it's movements anymore.

We've were able to plunk USN carrier groups outside of Soviet naval bases and operate beyond the horizon sometimes without the Soviets even knowing while flying mirror image strikes. And the Soviets had radar, ships, submarines, aircraft and satellites galore. Had it been an actual shooting war with the Warsaw Pact, the likelihood of an actual sneak attack by a USN carrier group on a Soviet naval base, say Petroplavask and be completely undetected until the bombs started to fall was pretty high, even as late as the mid to late 1980's.

Admiral Lyons managed to sneak the Eisenhower battle group right up to the Kola Peninsula and launch a mock alpha strike without the Soviets detecting them, and we also put carriers in the Sea of Okhotsk without being detected. You underestimate the ability to hide naval units with tactical deception. Sometimes it is even difficult enough for friendly aviators to find their carriers even though they are given as much assistance as possible from everyone.

It isn't as if the Soviets didn't have plenty of satellites looking, or ships on the water, including hundreds of fishing vessels and small commercial craft. It is possible to evade sensors with a carrier, or blend in and look like commercial traffic, and importantly this is practiced.

The USN has developed and honed the practice of being able to completely hide a entire carrier task force from detection if they so wished; any Navy people who has experience with carrier ops know this. In war time with the proper EMCOM conditions set an CSG is very difficult, very difficult to find, despite all the advancements in sensor technologies. But that's a totally different discussion altogether.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
And the torpedoes are getting bigger ranges, faster and more explosive. Perhaps you want to continue building battle ships.....I am glad you are not a military planner as well.

The same can be said about tanks; people have been able to build bigger and more powerful weapons to destroy tanks. Do we stop designing and building tanks? Nope. In fact development continues.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 51, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 7994 times:

ThePointblank, you make so many statements that are factually false, that my respect for you is now zero. Here some examples:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
A F-35 is right then and there to make a decision to drop. A weapons technician 2000km away in a submarine can't make the same level of decisions someone on sight can.

It can be recalled and the target changed midlfight, if need be. Nobody on the submarine decides to launch nor select the target.

Cruise missiles do not need to establish air superiority nor fight their way in nor out nor land nor require a highly and expensively trained human pilot. Each F-35 will also cost as much as a fleet of Cruise missiles. You seem to always butter under the cost of the F-35, while trumpeting the costs of everything else as a justification for the F-35.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
Any real military expert will laugh at your suggestion.

Does Defense Secretary Gates count as an expert? "Consider, too, the growing anti-ship capabilities of adversaries." - referring to carrier vulnerabilities and questioning the need for 11 carriers.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
Had it been an actual shooting war with the Warsaw Pact, the likelihood of an actual sneak attack by a USN carrier group on a Soviet naval base, say Petroplavask and be completely undetected until the bombs started to fall was pretty high, even as late as the mid to late 1980's.

Even if what you say is true, which I doubt, it's not the 1980s anymore.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
no submarine has ever been replenished at sea.

There are special ships called submarine tenders, specifically for the purpose of replenishing nuclear submarines. So what you claim has never been done, has in fact, been done countless times. I will no longer respond to your falsehoods - a waste of time.

Maybe start with explaining your false statement on Italian government loans.... I've asked you already countless times. Or maybe just stop making stuff up.


User currently offlineArniepie From Belgium, joined Aug 2005, 1265 posts, RR: 1
Reply 52, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 7959 times:

The F16V

This doesn't bode well for the total initially planned production volumes envisioned for the F35
program.
LM is planning a serious upgrade for their F16 program, even making it reversable implementable on older
F16's.
USAF already planning to get a first batch of 300, this might ultimately lead to a seriously reduced amount of F35's,
together with the newest version of (super) super hornets in the pipeline, this might well mean that the 'old' legacy
platforms will be in use at least a couple more decades.

http://theaviationist.com/2012/02/16/f16v/

Quoting from the link:
F-35 unaffordable? No problem, here’s your Plan B: the (unstealthy) F-16V February 16, 2012
Posted by Richard Clements in F-35, Military Aviation.
Tags: F-16V, General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon, Lockheed Martin, Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, radar, USAF
trackback
Lockheed Martin took the opportunity to wow the crowds at the Singapore Air Show and unwrapped its latest version of the legendary F-16 Fighting Falcon: the F-16V variant. The upgrades include a new glass cockpit, a new mission computer and data-link architecture, as well as a brand new active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar.

The latest in a long line of versions including the Block 60 aircraft (developed for the United Arab Emirates), the new F-16V would be the highest spec F-16 available and, although Lockheed Martin has not disclosed it yet, it would be assumed that some of the features from the previous most advanced versions would still be available (conformal fuel tanks etc.)

Lockheed Martin also said that elements of the upgrade would be available to older models as an upgrade program so the new AESA radar could make its way into older aircraft and sales of the ‘V’ version would be aimed at existing operators.

So, countries that cannot stretch to the costs of buying and running the F-35 have a cheaper alternative especially if they already operate older versions of the F-16.




2nd link
http://www.dailytech.com/Lockheed+Ma...omplement+F35+F22/article24025.htm

[Edited 2012-02-17 05:16:03]


[edit post]
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 53, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 7881 times:

Quoting Arniepie (Reply 52):
This doesn't bode well for the total initially planned production volumes envisioned for the F35
program.

You do realize that LM makes both the V and F35? This isn't an alternative to the F35 by any means.


User currently offlineArniepie From Belgium, joined Aug 2005, 1265 posts, RR: 1
Reply 54, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 7866 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 53):
You do realize that LM makes both the V and F35?

Yes, thank you for kicking in an open door.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 53):
This isn't an alternative to the F35 by any means.

In your undying blind support for all things F35, have you even contemplated that maybe, just maybe , even LM
is no longer certain that the F35 will be build in anywhere near the originally planned production volumes and that
they have to give this low budget alternative to their own F35 if they want to keep their position in the fighter market, like they have now?

This idea of a few F35's coupled with a substantial number of more conventional aircraft like the F16 or F18 iso a sole
F35 base for the next generation of fighters is by no means a new idea and already was floated at the first signs of budget, technological and deliverytime problems.

One thing is sure, if all this materializes , things don't look good at all when it comes to the per copy price of the F35, likely to explode even more.



[edit post]
User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 55, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 7858 times:

All of these statements are either irrelevant or false:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
If you think the US can be defended by less than 100 combat capable F-22's, then we have a problem.

Why are you forgetting the entire US arsenal and fleet, besides F-22s?

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
Get into an actual shooting war, and we would probably deplete the US military's stocks of Tomahawk cruise missiles in less than a week.

Why are you leaving out the entire US arsenal, besides Cruise missiles that can be dropped by B-2s, B-52s, F-22s and any number of other aircraft?

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
Replenishment at sea is always tricky, and no submarine has ever been replenished at sea.

False.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
You mean the less than 100 combat capable F-22's available, right? Have you looked at the serviceability numbers of the F-22 yet? Abysmal is putting things lightly. Not to mention the numerous software and technical glitches that still exist with the F-22 that have yet to be ironed out, well after IOC.

The F-35 is having an even bumpier road. These bumps/delays/spiraling costs increases and unmet promises, are indicative that many issues will remain after IOC. Even now, many want to start flight training with unsafe aircraft parked in the desert, with known defects. The delays are already so massive, there is immense pressure to rush. If the F-35 is on only par with the F-22 in availability, it will make even less sense and looks more expensive. You actually argue against the F-35 by highlighting this.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
The USN has developed and honed the practice of being able to completely hide a entire carrier task force from detection if they so wished; any Navy people who has experience with carrier ops know this

False. That is wishful thinking. Satellites, UAVs, recc ships, etc...they can't hide at will anymore. Unless the USN has a Klingon cloaking device that also hides the ship's massive wake.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 53):
You do realize that LM makes both the V and F35?

So what? Irrelevant.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 46):
You know there are only so many 707's that are compatible left in the boneyards that the US Military can pick over for spare parts, right?

False. The USAF Depot makes many required parts including skins as they have been extensively reskinned and reribbed. It is many times cheaper to do this, than to junk them and replace with new. Some 707 based frames are planned to be in the fleet till at least 2035 and their readiness rate is the best in the entire USAF fleet. They are not reliant on old frames for required parts anymore.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 46):

So you plan on using a million dollar missile from a multi-billion dollar submarine, thousands of miles away, that once fired, cannot be recalled or aborted?

False, these can be recalled, aborted and even rerouted.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 44):
What you fail to realize is that it costs more to operate older fleets of ageing fighters.

False. See GAO reports and calculations on this.

There are many more...........the love affair with the F-35 seems to blind the truth.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 56, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 7855 times:

Countries that cannot afford to build fleets of the most advanced supersonic fighters can afford to build pods with clever software to mount on older airframes. This was brought home dramatically in Cope India 2004, a large aerial-combat training exercise that pitted F-15 pilots from Elmendorf against India’s air force, which is made up of the MiG-21 and MiG-29, and the newer Mirage 2000 and Russian-built Su-30. The exercises were conducted high over north-central India, near the city of Gwalior.

“We came rolling in, like, ‘Beep-beep, superpower coming through,’” Colonel Fornof told me. “And we had our eyes opened. We learned a lot. By the third week, we were facing a threat that we weren’t prepared to face, because we had underestimated them. They had figured out how to take Russian-built equipment and improve upon it.”

A small country can buy a MiG-21 on the world weapons market for about $100,000, put in a better engine, add more-sophisticated radar and jamming systems, improve the cockpit design, and outfit it with “launch and leave” missiles comparable to the AMRAAM. These hybrid threats are more dangerous than any rival fighters America has seen in generations, and they cost much less than building a competitive fourth-generation fighter from scratch. The lower expense enables rival air forces to put more of them in the air, and because the F-15 can carry only so many munitions, American pilots found themselves overwhelmed by both technology and sheer numbers during the exercises over India.

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/...chive/2009/03/the-last-ace/7291/4/

Even if the F-22 and F-35 score perfect kills with no losses, due to their small numbers, they can't shoot all enemy planes. Then the surviving units go after the tankers and the entire F-22 and F-35 fleet is in trouble. The value of numbers is not to be underestimated. We don't want to become Sparta.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 57, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 7828 times:

Quoting Arniepie (Reply 54):
In your undying blind support for all things F35, have you even contemplated that maybe, just maybe , even LM
is no longer certain that the F35 will be build in anywhere near the originally planned production volumes and that
they have to give this low budget alternative to their own F35 if they want to keep their position in the fighter market, like they have now?

Yes, countries that can't afford the F35 will upgrade their F-16's to the V. I was simply stating that they won't be in a competition with each other for orders.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 56):
The value of numbers is not to be underestimated. We don't want to become Sparta.

Why there will be over 2000 F-35's world wide.

Quoting Arniepie (Reply 54):
One thing is sure, if all this materializes , things don't look good at all when it comes to the per copy price of the F35, likely to explode even more.

Everything has gone up in price in the last decade.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 58, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 7820 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 57):
Why there will be over 2000 F-35's world wide.


but how many will be mission ready.. let's see 2-300 restricted to training, 700 in maintenance,.. shoot we're down to 50% already .. a couple hundred in "allies" hands that may or may not support the mission and will have dumbed down electronics. then consider what's left is deployed all over the place and can not be moved without creating a power vacuum.. suddenly 100 F-22's is a large fleet.   


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 59, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 7811 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 58):
let's see 2-300 restricted to training, 700 in maintenance

Excellent post, very informative. You must use the garbage coming from the main stream media to formulate your posts.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 60, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 7778 times:

Let me say before I start this post I am an advocate of the F-35 but I also recognise that it is not the be all and end all of military aviation. I just can't keep reading some of this and not say something......

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):

1. Submarines are already acquired, are operational, so have no acquisition costs

You are right Tommytoyz, there are a large number of US submarines that are capable of deploying tomahawk cruise missiles. The problem is a significant number of these subs are reaching end of life. You cannot simply extend their life without a very costly nuclear refuel. As such the US is buying new Virginia class SSNs that are currently costing US1.5-2 billion per boat. These acquisition costs need to be factored in. Currently there are plans for 31 boats and the US Navy, rightly IMHO is attempting to maintain a 55 boat (including SSBN) fleet. Each sub is being built with 12 tubes for Tomahawk (except the four SSGNs that have ~152 missiles, being only four of them there are usually only ever two at sea and they also have the special ops insertion role).

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
2. Cruise missiles, same already acquired

There are a number of cruise missiles in US service. These include the BGM-109 Tomahawk, the AGM-86 ALCM and AGM-129 ACM, AGM-158 JASSM, AGM-84 Harpoon and AGM-154 JSOW. All of these weapons are subsonic. Of all of these only the Tomahawk and the AGM-86/129 have a range greater than 300nm. Of the long range systems only the Tomahawk can be redirected during flight, "redirected" not recalled as you keep saying. They mean two very different things. Once you fire a Blk IV Tomahawk you can never get it back, it has to hit the ground somewhere, you simply have a choice to decide where.

Of the long range systems, Wiki says the US has ~3500 Tomahawks which sounds about right. Wiki also says the USAF has 1140 AGM-86 and 460 AGM-129s, all of which will be retired by 2020 due to serviceability and START treaty commitments. Of these 1500 odd AGM-86/129, only a couple of hundred of them do not have a nuclear warhead! All of the AGM-86/129 are launched by the B-52 only! The B-2 and the B-1B are not certified, cleared or have launchers to fire the above missiles!

Here is the big kicker for the cruise missiles, ALL of them rely on GPS for primary navigation. They do have fall back INS systems (and these have come a long way) or TERCOM for Tomahawk (still reliant on GPS). They also all fly subsonic on low altitude flight paths. There are problems with the above reliance.
First, there are a significant number of nations that now have a GPS jamming capability, in fact on ebay you can buy a commercial GPS jammer for about US$50 and probably make one for even less. The Serbs claimed to have used GPS jammers extensively during the Bosnian campaign. Whether the GPS jammers work on military receivers is a question none of us have the answer to but I am sure there would be a level of uncertainty, thereby increasing the error distance expected for all of these missiles and requiring more missiles to ensure target destruction. There is also the potential for the GPS constellation to be targeted in the future by adversaries such as China (who have already demonstrated a limited ASAT capability).
Second, the current suite of SAM systems being exported by Russia all claim to have a capability against precision munitions and cruise missiles. One of these SAM systems in the target area, which you can't target with a cruise missile because they are all mobile and therefore will likely move before your GPS targeted subsonic missile arrives, again increases the number of missiles you need to use to ensure target destruction.
Third, as touched above your cruise missiles are useless against mobile targets. They fly to a point in space, recognise the area and hit the pre-determined target. During OIF (again according the Wiki) the US fired more than 725 Tomahawks. None of these targets were mobile, they were all fixed installation centres and Iraq had a near non-existent air defence.

So in a scenario against a modern military adversary with sophisticated layered air defences, GPS jamming and mobile weapons systems the cruise missile does not give you the certainty you require, nor IMHO does 3500 Tomahawks sound like enough to do the job. Sure you can add the air launched short range weapons being fired from aircraft but these do not add significantly to the numbers, nor does it solve your GPS and mobile target issue. None of the cruise missiles are currently designed as anti-radiation either so they are not able to target pop-up air defence systems.

To bring this back to the subs (and the surface vessels) launching Tomahawks, twelve missiles per sub and maybe 15-20 per surface vessel does not give you enough weapons in area at a time

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
3. Once an F-35 drops a bomb, it can not be recalled, a cruise missile can (look it up)

As I indicated above, a cruise missile cannot be recalled although the Tomahawk can be redirected. As far as air drop-able weapons are concerned nothing can be recalled but LGBs and AGM-65s can be redirected, a feature that the F-35, as well as the F-15, 16, and 18 can all use. The reality is it doesn't matter, as in any aircraft the aircrew have made sure of the target before the weapon is dropped.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
F-35 needs to be reloaded, just like a sub - but a sub carries as much firepower as a fleet of F-35s

One standard SSN carries 12 Tomahawk cruise missiles in vertical launch tubes and perhaps a couple more launched through the torpedo tubes (at the expense of torpedoes and harpoon missiles). The Tomahawk has a 1,000lb warhead. So that makes ~12,000lbs of explosive power. One F-35 or F-15E can carry and drop that much ordinance. It therefore does not require a fleet of F-35, or for that matter any US aircraft to carry the same firepower. The Tomahawks may fly further but they also cannot attack mobile targets so it a trade-off.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
A sub can always be reloaded at sea or at the closest base, not necessarily in the USA

I agree, they can be reloaded at sea. But the ability to reload the number of Tomahawk rounds required for the amount of SSNs that will have fired them quickly adds up and having to move back and forth to a sub tender would take away from the subs primary missions of sea denial and ISR.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
For sustaining an attack we already have better weapons than the F-35 (B-2, B-52, UAVs, A-10, etc..)

Let us look at each.
B-2 - Of the above you have mentioned only the B-2 has the ability to penetrate modern air defences and even that is limited. I would guess that the RCS of the B-2 is larger than that of the F-22 and the F-35, a function of size, improved technology and better computer processing power. It also cannot engage enemy aircraft.
B-52 - Cannot penetrate modern air defences and the jammer upgrades required to make the platform more survivable in a modern air battle have not been funded. The B-52 will not be going near the battlefront and it only has a limited number of AGM-86/129s that are non-nuclear. It also cannot engage enemy aircraft.
UAVs - Perhaps 5% of current UAVs have the ability to penetrate modern air defences and none of these are armed. This will increase but UAVs have significant limitations. First, they are flown by an operator who communicates with the aircraft either by satellite or line of sight ground station. This makes them completely reliant on constant communications with the operator having the ability to use any weapons. They are typically short ranged (but have long loiter times), slow and cannot fly in adverse weather conditions and therefore require bases close to the battlefront (and usually closer than manned aircraft who fly much faster). Most UAVs are not armed, the RQ-1/MQ-1 usually flies around unarmed and the MQ-9 is armed but there are only 57 of them! The software to make UAVs fly and fight autonomously does not exist yet. It is being developed but IMHO will not be ready for frontline service (and trusted by commanders) until at least 2030. The last key issue with UAVs is bandwidth. These is simply not enough bandwidth from sat systems to provide for al the UAVs the US currently has, let alone the increased numbers people want them to get. The bandwidth is being addressed by the WGS and AEHF constellations but these will probably cost a combined total of US$15 billion. I think it is unlikely these will meet the needs of the US military for sat bandwidth given the number of users. They are also again susceptible to jamming and interdiction by ASAT weapons.
A-10 - Is a battlefield interdiction aircraft, it is not designed for any type of strike mission. It is a shame it is being retired as it has some great capabilities. The F-35 will be able to accomplish most of its roles and this has been deemed by the USAF as good enough.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):

7. This is without even counting a single old fighter F-15/16/18, which we do have around for a decade or two

Yes the US has lots of F-15/16/18 but they are getting old, this is not a justification for the F-35, simply a statement of fact. There is a finite amount of time that a combat aircraft can fly and the cost of doing a SLEP becomes more expensive. An example of this is the Australian retirement of the F-111. It was deemed to be cost neutral to retire the F-111 and acquire the F-18F for the following reasons.
The F-111 was suffering significant issues with serviceability to the point of 2/3 of the fleet being unavailable at anyone time. The money required to keep the airframe in service was moving into the billions for the 10 years projected. The ability of the aircraft to survive in modern air defences was limited. It's suite of weapons was limited, evidence of this is the attempt to integrate the AGM-142 onto the airframe. This took 8 years to reach IOC and most of these issues were related to fitting a modern weapon onto a 60s era aircraft. Finally specific to the F-111 it could not self-escort. Being able to conduct self-escort strike is critical to manned fighter aircraft. Most air forces are now equipped with aircraft that can carry bombs and AAMs and use both when required. It limits the offensive load of the platform but makes it more survivable.

Now the F-15/16/18 can self-escort strike but they are getting older and their systems will need significant upgrade to survive in an air campaign that includes modern Russian air defence systems. There are no valid arguments to this, the USAF acknowledges this and most people with some knowledge and common sense also acknowledge this.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
8. This is all without counting the F-22, which can drop JDAMS and a few more A2G weapons - in full stealth

First let us say that pointblank is right, there are only ~100 F-22s that are available for wartime service. Second, the F-22 is only certified for JDAMs and SBDs, both carried internally (no external A2G weapons carriage). It does not have the ability to fire any type of cruise missile, anti-radiation missile, cluster bomb, laser guided bomb etc. It is limited to 1,000lb JDAMs. From the Iran strike thread it should be obvious that a weapon greater than 1,000lbs is required to penetrate underground facilities, the US has some specific 2,000lb, 5,000lb and 30,000lb class weapons specifically designed to destroy underground facilities. The F-15 and the F-35 can carry some of these larger weapons, the F-22 is not designed to and no plans to change this. It therefore is limited in its ability to engage ground targets from the size of weapon and type of weapon. A severe limitation is not being able to drop LGBs, required for instance if you strike aircraft randomly parked on an airfield or inside a GPS jamming environment. No other manned fighter platform that can drop A2G weapons has abandoned the LGB except for the F-22. The typhoon suffered similar limitations in Libya when it had to rely on other aircraft to do the lasing.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
- But you maintain the USA would be helpless without the F-35?

I don't think anyone is claiming the US would be helpless without the F-35. Right now it is the most powerful military in the world and likely will be for the next 20 years. What people are saying is that much of the strength of US military power comes from tactical air power. To not replace all these 70s era aircraft with something would be a mistake, right now the F-35, with it's VLO features, advanced sensors etc is the only valid choice.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 48):
As to carriers, do you really think carriers are unsinkable these days, much less in the years to come? Do you not know about the sophisticated mini subs (20 people or so) and torpedoes that are either operational or coming, developed by several countries, not in NATO? These coming subs will be much harder to detect, going as far as creating a false magnetic field to blend in with the background magnetic field, whatever it may be, like a fish changing colors. They also do not run on nuclear, but on Fuel Cells, fueled by Diesel or Gas, were they can operate 2-3 weeks underwater at full speed and quieter than nuclear, as there is no heat, steam or turbine or large bearings involved, just an electric engine, without a shaft or bearings to the prop. It's much cheaper and quieter. Basically no moving parts for propulsion. They will also have more stealthy Sonar signature and shape and be smaller in general.

No one says a carrier cannot be sunk, and there are greater threats to carrier aviation than there have ever been before. The Chinese ASBM is a good example. Ironically the F-35 actually helps the carriers. It's high fuel fraction and almost twice greater range than current aircraft allows the carrier to stand off at much greater distances. This moves the carrier into deeper water where the US is king in anti-submarine warfare. Within the Persian gulf and other confined waterways a small submarine has potential to avoid detection. In a blue water scenario though these vessels struggle. I also do not think your assessment of when these systems will be ready is accurate. I would expect this capability to appear closer to 2035 or 2040 and by advanced nations with significant submarine knowledge such as China and Russia.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 50):
Any real military expert will laugh at your suggestion. Any perceived superiority of submarines against aircraft carriers is only found in highly scripted exercises that is not reflective of real combat conditions.

Subs have the great ability to deny an area, even to the US Navy. A carrier would not move into an area until it knew it was free of submarines (as much as you can guarantee that). The US Navy though does have the most resources, probably advanced technology and high training level to put at the issue.

Quoting Arniepie (Reply 52):
The F16V

This doesn't bode well for the total initially planned production volumes envisioned for the F35
program.

To me this is an attempt to open a wider market and not compete with the F-35. There are a number of nations who will not be sold the F-35, such as Indonesia and a number of Arab nations, who would benefit significantly from this package. The addition of an AESA radar for an older F-16 would probably cost in the order of US$5-10 million irrespective of the other enhancements to the airframe. It is the cheaper option for a less advanced military that does not require the capabilities of an F-35.

It also brings the modified F-16s into retirement age around 2025-30, right when LM are looking to fill the production line with cheap F-35s for export customers after US and allied customers have been satisfied. 15 years might be time enough to give these nations, especially someone like Indonesia, to be able to operate and afford the F-35.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 55):
Quoting Powerslide (Reply 44):
What you fail to realize is that it costs more to operate older fleets of ageing fighters.

False. See GAO reports and calculations on this.

I have read a number of GAO reports in costs to maintain the fighter fleet and from what I have read all the GAO considers is the current airframe. It often does not look at or include modifications required to keep the airframe up to date technologically. There are plenty of examples of military aircraft that can fly around for years without incident as long as they are being taken care of. Iran with their F-4/5/14s is a great example. Are these aircraft really a threat though to anyone in the gulf? Being able to fly is one thing and being able to fight effectively is a totally different story.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 56):
Countries that cannot afford to build fleets of the most advanced supersonic fighters can afford to build pods with clever software to mount on older airframes. This was brought home dramatically in Cope India 2004, a large aerial-combat training exercise that pitted F-15 pilots from Elmendorf against India’s air force, which is made up of the MiG-21 and MiG-29, and the newer Mirage 2000 and Russian-built Su-30. The exercises were conducted high over north-central India, near the city of Gwalior.

“We came rolling in, like, ‘Beep-beep, superpower coming through,’” Colonel Fornof told me. “And we had our eyes opened. We learned a lot. By the third week, we were facing a threat that we weren’t prepared to face, because we had underestimated them. They had figured out how to take Russian-built equipment and improve upon it.”

A small country can buy a MiG-21 on the world weapons market for about $100,000, put in a better engine, add more-sophisticated radar and jamming systems, improve the cockpit design, and outfit it with “launch and leave” missiles comparable to the AMRAAM. These hybrid threats are more dangerous than any rival fighters America has seen in generations, and they cost much less than building a competitive fourth-generation fighter from scratch. The lower expense enables rival air forces to put more of them in the air, and because the F-15 can carry only so many munitions, American pilots found themselves overwhelmed by both technology and sheer numbers during the exercises over India.
http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/...91/4/

The COPE India exercises are a really bad example of what you're trying to identify as there were severe limitations in what the US could do.

''The reasons for the drubbing have gone largely unexplained and been misunderstood, according to those based here with the 3rd Wing who participated. Two major factors stand out: None of the six 3rd Wing F-15Cs was equipped with the newest long-range, active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars. These Raytheon APG-63(V)2 radars were designed to find small and stealthy targets. At India's request, the U.S. agreed to mock combat at 3-to-1 odds and without the use of simulated long-range, radar-guided AIM-120 Amraams that even the odds with beyond-visual-range kills.ual-range kills.''

''Generally the combat scenario was to have four F-15s flying at any time against about 12 Indian aircraft. While the U.S. pilots normally train to four versus 12, that takes into account at least two of the U.S. aircraft having AESA radar and being able to make the first, beyond-visual-range shots. For the exercise, both sides restricted long-range shots.

"That's what the Indians wanted to do," Snowden says. "That [handicap] really benefits a numerically superior force because you can't whittle away some of their force at long range. They were simulating active missiles [including] AA-12s." This means the missile has its own radar transmitter and doesn't depend on the launch aircraft's radar after launch. With the older AA-10 Alamo, the launching fighter has to keep its target illuminated with radar so the U.S. pilots would know when they were being targeted. But with the AA-12, they didn't know if they had been targeted. The Mirage 2000s carried the active Mica missile. Aerospace industry officials said that some of the radars the U.S. pilots encountered, including that of the Mirage 2000s, exhibited different characteristics than those on standard versions of the aircraft.''
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1237790/posts

The Indians did very well in the exercise and certainly showed that they have the ability to conceive their own tactics and use their equipment extremely well but it is not an example of how a numerically superior force can overwhelm US air power!

Quoting tommytoyz (Thread starter):
Has there ever been such a long development period for an aircraft? From the 1990s to 2020s it's going to be about 25 years to IOC. These early LRIP tranches are just test planes that will likely never see action. How long did it take for the F-22?

If we can get back to what the tread was actually about. There have been numerous aircraft that have taken as long to develop. The Typhoon and the F-22 both had similar gestation periods and produced fantastic aircraft. The typhoon is still under development to reach a full multi-role standard, something I think that has hindered it in recent competitions. Several of the partner nations are waiting anxiously for the F-35 and I can see why. It promises increased capabilities over their current airframes at a similar cost. They also do not want to spend more money on their aging fleets than they have to.

Australia will get their first in 2015 and IOC in Australia sometime around 2018. This hasn't changed at this stage. This is probably 6 years later than the very optimistic initial plan by LM and the RAAF. This will be the par for programs in the future, especially programs like these that deal with such advanced technology.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 61, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 7721 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
So in a scenario against a modern military adversary with sophisticated layered air defences, GPS jamming and mobile weapons systems the cruise missile does not give you the certainty you require, nor IMHO does 3500 Tomahawks sound like enough to do the job

Which enemy exactly? Names please.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 59):
To bring this back to the subs (and the surface vessels) launching Tomahawks, twelve missiles per sub and maybe 15-20 per surface vessel does not give you enough weapons in area at a time

Again, for which enemy? Names please?

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
As I indicated above, a cruise missile cannot be recalled although the Tomahawk can be redirected.

Recalled as in told not to strike any targets once fired. Can the F-35 do that? No it can't.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
One standard SSN carries 12 Tomahawk cruise missiles in vertical launch tubes and perhaps a couple more launched through the torpedo tubes (at the expense of torpedoes and harpoon missiles). The Tomahawk has a 1,000lb warhead

So let's say at least 12,000 lbs of pure warheads. How many F-35s would it take to drop the same amount of WARHEADS (not just weight).

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
A-10 - Is a battlefield interdiction aircraft, it is not designed for any type of strike mission. It is a shame it is being retired as it has some great capabilities.

It is NOT being retired, until 2030. Many are being rewinged entirely. the F-35 is simply not good enough in this role.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The B-52 will not be going near the battlefront and it only has a limited number of AGM-86/129s that are non-nuclear. It also cannot engage enemy aircraft.

Do you expect bombers to become fighters as well?

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
Most UAVs are not armed,

Tell that to all the dead Pakistanis and Afghanis.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The last key issue with UAVs is bandwidth. These is simply not enough bandwidth from sat systems to provide for al the UAVs the US currently has

Even if true (any sources?), one launch rocket can put 7 satellites into orbit.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
First let us say that pointblank is right, there are only ~100 F-22s that are available for wartime service.
OK, sources link please. this has been repeated so many times, I want a source.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
I don't think anyone is claiming the US would be helpless without the F-35.

The F-35 cheer leaders have.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The Typhoon and the F-22 both had similar gestation periods and produced fantastic aircraft

How many years for each please? I have already shown that the F-35 from program timeline from start to IOC is much longer than that of the F-22. Please give some equivalent data. Thank you.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
As such the US is buying new Virginia class SSNs that are currently costing US1.5-2 billion per boat.

These will be bought regardless of the F-35.

[Edited 2012-02-18 00:54:57]

User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 62, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 7709 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 51):
Cruise missiles do not need to establish air superiority nor fight their way in nor out nor land nor require a highly and expensively trained human pilot. Each F-35 will also cost as much as a fleet of Cruise missiles. You seem to always butter under the cost of the F-35, while trumpeting the costs of everything else as a justification for the F-35.

Ozair has dissected the issue quite well; there is a very limited stock of cruise missiles available, and there isn't a cruise missile in the world that can attack moving targets.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 51):
Even if what you say is true, which I doubt, it's not the 1980s anymore.

Ask any Navy personnel that served onboard carriers during the Cold War. Heck, we were able to essentially play keep away with the USS Midway's task force during 82 a few hundred miles away from Petroplavask. The Soviets never were able to find us until the very end when we let them see us for almost a week, despite all of the satellites, ships, and aircraft the Soviets had that were actively searching for Midway.

Imagine the strategic implications of this feat. A strategic strike capable force operated with complete impunity for almost a week within range of strategic assets without being detected. Had it actually been a shooting war, Petropavask, the main Soviet Pacific naval base, would have been bombed to smithereens, along with the Soviet Navy's Pacific fleet.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
So let's say at least 12,000 lbs of pure warheads. How many F-35s would it take to drop the same amount of WARHEADS (not just weight).

Easy: 3. A F-35A or C can carry 2 2000lb GBU-31's and a pair of AIM-120's for self defence in terms of weight. If you need more warheads, but don't need the size, 8 SBD's can be carried, along with a pair of AIM-120's. If stealth isn't required, it has 6 external hardpoints that can carry up to 15,000lb's of weapons.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 55):

The F-35 is having an even bumpier road. These bumps/delays/spiraling costs increases and unmet promises, are indicative that many issues will remain after IOC. Even now, many want to start flight training with unsafe aircraft parked in the desert, with known defects. The delays are already so massive, there is immense pressure to rush. If the F-35 is on only par with the F-22 in availability, it will make even less sense and looks more expensive. You actually argue against the F-35 by highlighting this.

Then you won't believe the issues some older fighters had during development; The F/A-18 when it first came out never met the range requirements, and it has various structural and technical issues that affected performance and service life even after IOC.

Take a closer look at some pictures of the F/A-18. Ever notice those cast-aluminum fences bolted on the LEX of F/A-18's? Ever notice the plates of metal bolted on the bases of the verticals on F/A-18s? Do you know the back story to those? I will tell you:

Shortly after the F-18 entered service, it was discovered that the vertical tails were suffering from cracks and fatigue. This structural damage limited the first batch of planes to a few hundred flight hours, as opposed to the several thousand flight hours the Navy required for the service life of its aircraft. The cause of the structural cracks was eventually traced back to the LEX vortices impacting on the vertical tails and creating loads the tails weren't designed to handle.

In particular, the problem was due to a phenomenon called vortex bursting. As a vortex travels downstream, it enlarges and becomes weaker. If the rotational velocity of the vortex drops low enough, the increasing pressure within the vortex causes it to lose its tornado-like structure and break apart. This bursting behavior was found to occur just ahead of the F-18 vertical tails. The resulting air flow impinged directly on the tails causing severe buffeting and structural damage. Further worsening the situation was the fact that the frequency of loads induced by vortex bursting just happened to coincide with the first natural frequency of bending in the vertical tail.

It wasn't until NASA was brought in to do some flight tests did they discover the issue. Collectively, these issues lead to a grounding of the then new F/A-18, with further deliveries being halted for months in the early 1980's until a fix was in for the problem.

McDonnell Douglas, after the NASA tests results came in identifying the problem, quickly formed a "tiger team" of engineering experts to tackle the problem. The solution they ultimately implemented was the LEX fence. This fence is essentially another vortex generator itself. The fence creates a second unsteady vortex that interacts with the vortex created by the leading edge extension. This interaction strengthens the rotation of the main vortex so that vortex bursting is eliminated in the vicinity of the vertical tail. McDD also made a second modification to increase the fatigue life of the airframe. Three small L brackets were added to the base of each vertical tail to provide increased structural strength. Both of these fixes were implemented for aircraft already produced, and for future F/A-18's that came off the assembly line.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 55):
False. That is wishful thinking. Satellites, UAVs, recc ships, etc...they can't hide at will anymore. Unless the USN has a Klingon cloaking device that also hides the ship's massive wake.

Still can. Much of the process of targeting is determining which of the many contacts detected is the one you are looking for. Most techniques to counter identification rely on exploiting the Achilles Heel of Radar and Communication. To work, you have to transmit, and by transmitting you tell the opposition who and where you are. Don't transmit, and he has to find you the hard way, by visual identification searching the vast ocean area 10sqnm at a time. If the opposition is going to search with active sensors such as radar, he is also telling you where he is and who he is. As such, fighters can go out and bag that search aircraft, or UAV, or deal with that surface ship long before it even finds the carrier.

The trick is to prevent identification and localization of the force. Decoys run out and radiate. Aircraft launch on missions running silent, fly out to a deception point at low altitude, then climb and radiate as normal. The searchers locate the pop-up point but don't find the carrier. This is particularly effective if the first launch of the day locates a large, neutral merchant or cruise liner and everybody uses that as the reference deception point. Then the searchers actually see a target at the point that the flight patterns indicate. In wartime they commit, they lose their attack force, its now game over for the attacker, and the carrier now has a free ride.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
Subs have the great ability to deny an area, even to the US Navy. A carrier would not move into an area until it knew it was free of submarines (as much as you can guarantee that). The US Navy though does have the most resources, probably advanced technology and high training level to put at the issue.

A sub vectored out to find a carrier group has to have some idea of where to look. If the carrier has freedom to operate it can avoid contact by "random and dynamic" movement. Only if the carrier locks itself to a set operational area and pattern (as in most structured exercises which lends itself to the prevailing myth of submarine superiority) does it become predictable and hence, vulnerable. If the carriermoves it forces the sub to move to catch it, thereby making the sub more detectable. Of course, one could run over the sub by accident in which case it falls to carrier group number two to take up the fight...

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):

Even if true (any sources?), one launch rocket can put 7 satellites into orbit.
http://gcn.com/articles/2010/10/19/a...orce-ponders-uav-technologies.aspx

And satellites and their launches are expensive. An Atlas V launch is well over 138 million dollars. The Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite is over $2 billion dollars a satellite.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
OK, sources link please. this has been repeated so many times, I want a source.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2008/...ter-lockheed-idUSN2035135720081120

I will note that the the reliability and availability KPP's for the F-35 are driven by USN requirements, not USAF requirements. The USN has a higher standard in regards to availability rates for their aircraft, and many key aspects of the F-35 reflect NAVAIR's influence; for example, the F-35's stealth coatings are considerably more durable than the F-22's coating. In fact, one can take a knife to the F-35's skin, and it won't damage the stealth coating's performance unlike the F-22. I will note that the baseline requirements for the JSF program mandate that the jet be twice as reliable as a late model F-16 or F/A-18, which is a reflection of NAVAIR's requirements.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 63, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 7703 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Which enemy exactly? Names please.

Let me illustrate the modern air defences. From Wiki we get every known or suggested operator of the S-300, which are
Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, China, Cyprus & Greece, Kazakhstan, North Korea, Slovakia, Syria, Russia, Ukraine, Venezuela, Vietnam.

Users of the S-400 are Russia and potentially Saudi Arabia.

Users of the SA-17 are Belarus, Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, Georgia, China, Russia, Syria, Ukraine, Venezuela.

Users of the SA-22 are Algeria, Jordon, Russia, Syria, Iran, UAE.

I think I can come up with three or four of the above that could see conflict within the next 10-15 years. Do you wonder why the western world has been less enthusiastic about an air campaign over Syria? One of the key reasons are the above SAM systems.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Powerslide (Reply 59):
To bring this back to the subs (and the surface vessels) launching Tomahawks, twelve missiles per sub and maybe 15-20 per surface vessel does not give you enough weapons in area at a time

Again, for which enemy? Names please?

I am happy to go with the above. Remember you don't buy a piece of military kit for the next 5 years, you often buy it for 20-30 and a lot can change in that time.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
As I indicated above, a cruise missile cannot be recalled although the Tomahawk can be redirected.

Recalled as in told not to strike any targets once fired. Can the F-35 do that? No it can't.

That would be redirected, not recalled but it is just language. I think we agree the Tomahawk can be told to not strike a target. Considering the F-35 and every strike aircraft can be recalled or redirected all the way up until the weapon is released (45 seconds till impact for a medium level drop from an aircraft) I think is good enough.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
One standard SSN carries 12 Tomahawk cruise missiles in vertical launch tubes and perhaps a couple more launched through the torpedo tubes (at the expense of torpedoes and harpoon missiles). The Tomahawk has a 1,000lb warhead

So let's say at least 12,000 lbs of pure warheads. How many F-35s would it take to drop the same amount of WARHEADS (not just weight).

The F-35 will be able to carry 18,000 lbs of weapons, both internal and external. That could be 18 1,000 lb Mk-83s if you want?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
A-10 - Is a battlefield interdiction aircraft, it is not designed for any type of strike mission. It is a shame it is being retired as it has some great capabilities.

It is NOT being retired, until 2030. Many are being rewinged entirely. the F-35 is simply not good enough in this role.
http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/20...rforce-5-a10-squadrons-cut-013012/

5 squadrons cut initially. From the article, "While the A-10 is very good at providing close-air support, the Air Force needs aircraft that can do more than one mission, Adm. James Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Jan. 26 in an interview with Military Times reporters and editors.

“Is the F-35 going to be as good a close-air support platform as an A-10? I don’t think anybody believes that,” he said, “But is the A-10 going to be the air-to-air platform that the F-35 is going to be? So again, the Air Force is trying to get as much multimission capability into the limited number of platforms it’s going to have.”''

As I indicated above no-one thinks the F-35 will be better than the A-10 at close air support but the Adm describes the situation clearly enough.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The B-52 will not be going near the battlefront and it only has a limited number of AGM-86/129s that are non-nuclear. It also cannot engage enemy aircraft.

Do you expect bombers to become fighters as well?

Every aircraft that enters an adversaries air space that can be detected will probably be engaged. The B-52 cannot protect itself and therefore will require additional assets to provide protection. Assets that could be droping weapons on targets elsewhere. If you need to carpet bomb troop concentrations the B-52 is your man but it has its limitations.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
Most UAVs are not armed,

Tell that to all the dead Pakistanis and Afghanis.

Your right, UAVs have fired weapons and killed people but I said that above. Again I say that most are not armed and those that do fly armed are carrying typically small weapons. Good for afghans, not so good for deep bunkers.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The last key issue with UAVs is bandwidth. These is simply not enough bandwidth from sat systems to provide for al the UAVs the US currently has

Even if true (any sources?), one launch rocket can put 7 satellites into orbit.
http://gcn.com/Articles/2010/10/19/A...nders-UAV-Technologies.aspx?Page=1 This illustrates the issues with UAV bandwidth as well as the number of aircrew required for 50 UAVs. If it was so easy to launch 7 communications satellites that could handle secure military traffic don't you think they would have done it to solve the current issues? These systems costs billions to design, build and launch. They are also massive! You don't fit 7 of these on one launcher. Finally the SATCOM is competing for the same dollars everyone else is in the future constrained budget.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
First let us say that pointblank is right, there are only ~100 F-22s that are available for wartime service.
OK, sources link please. this has been repeated so many times, I want a source.

Wiki has the squadrons, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_Martin_F-22_Raptor but from a common sense standpoint. You would have 20 aircraft in the training unit. You would have another 15+ in the test and evaluation squadron and finally of the remaining 150 odd at least 30-40 are not serviceable at any one point. That would be standard numbers for any western combat airframe across the world.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
The Typhoon and the F-22 both had similar gestation periods and produced fantastic aircraft

How many years for each please? I have already shown that the F-35 from program timeline from start to IOC is much longer than that of the F-22. Please give some equivalent data. Thank you.


F-22. Contract award 1991 till first delivery 2003 and IOC 2006
Typhoon. Development started 1985-86 first delivery 2008 and still awaiting full multi-role capability.
F-35. Contract award 2001, first delivery 2012 probably IOC 2015-2016
All dates taken from their respective Wiki articles.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 61):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 60):
As such the US is buying new Virginia class SSNs that are currently costing US1.5-2 billion per boat.

These will be bought regardless of the F-35.

You claimed in post 48 that the subs were already acquired and had no acquisition costs. This is not true. To maintain the fleet numbers, due to serviceability and end of life, more subs need to be purchased. Kind of sounds a bit like the US tactical air fleet.........


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 64, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 7590 times:

Since I have pointed out so many falsehoods made by ThePointblank, I will not respond to anything he says anymore. I will not waste my time discussing irrelevant or false arguments.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
You claimed in post 48 that the subs were already acquired and had no acquisition costs.

What I said is 100% true, making your claim false. The subs and surface vessels we have now are paid for, period. Please prove otherwise if you make such a bold claim.

If you also make the claim that the subs will need replacing soon, please provide the details. How many how soon? You will soon see you are shooting from the hip and the facts do not back you up. The first Ohioa class was built in 1976 and the last in 1997 - all are still in service. The last Los Angeles class was built in 1996. They're all paid for, unless you have evidence to the contrary.

18 Ohio Class (oldest built in 1976 still in service) 4 of these carry and launch 154 cruise missiles
43 Los Angeles Class (each can carry and launch 43 tomahawks)
3 Seawolf Class (launch up to 50 cruise missiles)
8 Virginia Class (12 cruise missiles)

If you say that everything needs replacing sooner or later, that is of course true as nothing lasts forever. But that is different from your implied claim that the existing U.S. subs are about to be decommissioned.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
Even if true (any sources?), one launch rocket can put 7 satellites into orbit.
http://gcn.com/Articles/2010/10/19/A...nders-UAV-Technologies.aspx?Page=1 This illustrates the issues with UAV bandwidth as well as the number of aircrew required for 50 UAVs.

You can argue all day long about the difficulties with UAVs. The results speak for themselves on what they have already done. And they'll only get much better with time as the whole concept matures. The attack UAVs that will be available in 2020 will have far more range, be more stealthy and cheaper to acquire and operate than F-35s. It's just that simple.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
Every aircraft that enters an adversaries air space that can be detected will probably be engaged. The B-52 cannot protect itself and therefore will require additional assets to provide protection.

The B-52 can fire cruise missiles and other stand off weapons if necessary. It can also carpet bomb like no other. It's very good at what it does and any enemy will cause it pause at the thought of a squadron of B-52s lumbering in their direction. To hell with stealth, they don't need it.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
So again, the Air Force is trying to get as much multimission capability into the limited number of platforms it’s going to have.”''

This is the downfall of the F-35. It'll be good if it does as advertised. But the numbers will be too limited due to the extreme costs to be really effective and siphon off money from other solutions as well. A double whammy. Sparta.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
The F-35 will be able to carry 18,000 lbs of weapons, both internal and external. That could be 18 1,000 lb Mk-83s if you want?

Carrying a full load means carrying external stores, which defeats almost the entire stealth argument as it won't go in stealthy at all, only on the way out. The AGM-158 JASSM cruise missile has a bunker busting warhead by the way and only costs $700,000. The DoD can order 214 of these for every 1 F-35 and can be launched from:
B-1 Lancer
B-2 Spirit
B-52 Stratofortress
F-15E Strike Eagle
F-16 Fighting Falcon
F/A-18E/F Super Hornet
P-3 Orion
S-3 Viking
And they have almost zero operating costs.

The Tomahawk can also be fired from subs, ships, trucks and trains from 900 miles away. We have thousands of cruise missiles of all sorts and can always produce more and faster than we can produce F-35s in an emergency. We can also borrow more from allies who also have stockpiles of them, some of which we sold to them.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 63):
I think I can come up with three or four of the above that could see conflict within the next 10-15 years.

Name them. 3 or 4, and why. And can any of those not be penetrated by Cruise Missiles?

Bottom line, With the B-1,B-2, B-52, F-22, S-3, P-3, Subs, surface ships, trucks, cruise missiles, UAVs, A-10........and the list goes on and on, we can clobber anyone we want at any time and that won't change for another 30 years, especially without the costs the F-35 sucks up. It's so expensive, to the point it is detrimental overall as it hampers everything else.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 65, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 7567 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
I will not waste my time discussing irrelevant or false arguments.

Why, because it doesn't fit your naive point of view? What difference does it matter what you think, the F35 is going ahead in testing and will be acquired by the US forces and allies. Your "alternatives" are quite laughable, because if they made any sense at all, they would've been already implemented by the US. You present nothing new or revolutionary to the table, it has already been thought out and the F35 is the BEST and ONLY choice. Your arguments are irrelevant. You lose. Again.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 66, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 7557 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
If you also make the claim that the subs will need replacing soon, please provide the details. How many how soon? You will soon see you are shooting from the hip and the facts do not back you up. The first Ohioa class was built in 1976 and the last in 1997 - all are still in service. The last Los Angeles class was built in 1996. They're all paid for, unless you have evidence to the contrary.
http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ship/ssn-688-unit.htm
Of the 62 688 boats constructed, 44 are still in service. Only 24 will be in service by 2020 and all boats will be decommissioned by 2030. Of course they are paid for. I never said they weren't. What I did say is that they need replacing and the above numbers agree with me. To ensure they lose no capability the US must build 44 Virginia class SSNs between now and 2030. At a cost of US$1.5-2 Billion per boat in 2010 dollars that is essentially US$80 Billion. You cannot consider that this does not need to happen.

Again I say that you stated in Reply 48 that the boats are all paid for and acquired. To maintain the same capability as they currently have will require an investment of US$80 Billion by 2030. Sure the current boats are paid for but as I stated earlier they will be decommissioned and require replacement.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
You will soon see you are shooting from the hip and the facts do not back you up.

I don't think remarks like this do you any credit. I found the above information in 2 minutes searching on google. Perhaps before you make such flippant remarks you do a little fact checking yourself to ensure you have the correct information.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
43 Los Angeles Class (each can carry and launch 43 tomahawks)

43 Tomahawks at the expense of all torpedoes and Harpoons and only 12 of which can be rapid launched from the vertical tubes. That is not a realistic loadout and I certain has never occurred.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
If you say that everything needs replacing sooner or later, that is of course true as nothing lasts forever. But that is different from your implied claim that the existing U.S. subs are about to be decommissioned.

The above numbers speak for themselves, 20 boats decommissioned between 2012 and 2020 and 24 decommissioned by 2030.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
The attack UAVs that will be available in 2020 will have far more range, be more stealthy and cheaper to acquire and operate than F-35s.

Well since you like to play the source game provide me with examples of attack UAVs that will be in service by 2020 and the costs associated with operating them? I will give you the X-47 which is a development aircraft. No funding has been approved for production, it has yet to land on a carrier and no serious Industry expert expects these UAVs to be serving in any significant number by 2020.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
The B-52 can fire cruise missiles and other stand off weapons if necessary. It can also carpet bomb like no other. It's very good at what it does and any enemy will cause it pause at the thought of a squadron of B-52s lumbering in their direction. To hell with stealth, they don't need it.

Your statement doesn't make sense. Why is an enemy going to take pause? The USAF lost 17 B-52s to enemy action during the Vietnam war. Do you think they would fare better against modern SAM systems compared to the SA-2s that Vietnam used?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
This is the downfall of the F-35. It'll be good if it does as advertised. But the numbers will be too limited due to the extreme costs to be really effective and siphon off money from other solutions as well. A double whammy. Sparta.

I think you missed the point. The Vice-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff, one of your most senior military officers and likely heavily involved with force structure, stated they are retiring A-10s in favour of F-35s. Obviously they intend to buy enough of them to compensate for the loss of the A-10. Do you have any sources that indicate that the US will buy less than they have agreed to?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):

Carrying a full load means carrying external stores, which defeats almost the entire stealth argument as it won't go in stealthy at all, only on the way out.

You did not specify maintaining stealth but who cares. With stealth maintained the you need 5 F-35s to carry the same load. 5 aircraft that can go home, re-arm, refuel and fly again with 5 hours carrying the same load again. If I was being rude I would ask you please provide a source on how to fire 12 1,000 lb warheads from a submarine, or surface ship and maintain stealth for the entire flight?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
The AGM-158 JASSM cruise missile has a bunker busting warhead by the way and only costs $700,000. The DoD can order 214 of these for every 1 F-35 and can be launched from:
B-1 Lancer
B-2 Spirit
B-52 Stratofortress
F-15E Strike Eagle
F-16 Fighting Falcon
F/A-18E/F Super Hornet
P-3 Orion
S-3 Viking
And they have almost zero operating costs.

I know about the JASSM, in fact I listed it in reply 60 as one of the cruise missiles the US uses. It does have a bunker busting warhead but it is only 1,000 lbs. Not enough to penetrate deep bunkers. The JASSM has had a chequered development history, hopefully all the kinks are worked out as it promises to provide a great capability. Only thing though is it is the same as all the other cruise missiles, GPS/INS guidance and reliant on an IIR seeker in the target area. This requires a target package to be produced before the missile is taken airborne. It also does not solve the mobile target and GPS jamming issues.

Yes all those aircraft will carry JASSM and for your information so will the F-35.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
The Tomahawk can also be fired from subs, ships, trucks and trains from 900 miles away. We have thousands of cruise missiles of all sorts and can always produce more and faster than we can produce F-35s in an emergency. We can also borrow more from allies who also have stockpiles of them, some of which we sold to them.

Yes Tomahawks can be fired from subs and ships. I have never seen a truck or train installation (pretty sure they were never developed) but no reason it can't. You do have a lot of them, in fact I listed the amount in reply 60, ~3500. You are right, they can probably be produced more quickly than an F-35 but they can only be used once. An F-35 can potentially drop ordinance for its entire service life of 35 years. Don't count on getting any from allies either, the only export customer currently is the UK which has a grand total of 60 (from Wiki before you ask).

I am curious how the cost equation stacks up so let us have a look. Say an F-35 drops 4,000 lbs of ordinance every mission (maintaining stealth of course). Those two 2,000 lb weapons cost 100,000 each (that is a generous price) so $200,000. Fuel and other expenses are really moot as the Tomahawk has to be built and an engine installed as well as the fuel for every single round. The Tomahawk conservatively costs US$1.5 million each. If the F-35 flies 20 combat missions every year for 35 years it drops 2,800,000 lbs of ordinance for a cost of US$140,000,000. I also need to include the F-35 purchase cost of a worst case price of US$140 million (I won't make you include the cost of a submarine or surface ship to fire the Tomahawk, after all the F-35 has to fly from something). That makes it US$280 million total. The same amount of money buys 186 Tomahawks for a grand total of 186,000 lbs of explosive and 186 targets as opposed to a minimum of 700 for the F-35. I will add that the Tomahawk has the potential to strike targets deeper inland than the F-35 but the F-35 can hit pretty much every target imaginable from bunkers to troops in the open to close air support

Even if we drop the number of missions by half the equation is still absurdly in favour of manned combat aircraft over cruise missiles. Hence the reason nations all over the world continue to buy military fighter and strike aircraft.

I have never said the Tomahawk is bad, it is a great weapon but it is costly and has its limitations.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
Name them. 3 or 4, and why. And can any of those not be penetrated by Cruise Missiles?

Okay, China, Syria, Iran and Russia. China over the Taiwanese strait, Syria and Iran over the current Arab spring and internal domestic issues requiring international intervention. Russia over a resurgent military. Sure cruise missiles can penetrate the borders but can they hit every single target in the country? Given the advances in SAM systems I don't think so.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 64):
Bottom line, With the B-1,B-2, B-52, F-22, S-3, P-3, Subs, surface ships, trucks, cruise missiles, UAVs, A-10........and the list goes on and on, we can clobber anyone we want at any time and that won't change for another 30 years, especially without the costs the F-35 sucks up. It's so expensive, to the point it is detrimental overall as it hampers everything else.

In 30 years time the B-1, B-52, S-3, P-3, almost all the current subs, most of the current surface ships, all current cruise missiles, all current UAVs, the A-10 and the rest of your list minus perhaps the B-2 and F-22 will be out of service and require replacement.

The F-35 total program cost over the life of the airframe, even if we take that terrible figure of 1 trillion to operate, which is averaged over 30 years, will probably equal less than 3 years of total US defence budget expenditure over what will probably be a 42 year period (including development of the aircraft). For 2443 aircraft that fly and fight, the last of which is delivered in 2035, comprise a significant percentage of US power projection and the reason no US soldier has been killed by enemy air action since Korea, it is a great deal!


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 67, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 7552 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
Yes Tomahawks can be fired from subs and ships. I have never seen a truck or train installation (pretty sure they were never developed) but no reason it can't. You do have a lot of them, in fact I listed the amount in reply 60, ~3500. You are right, they can probably be produced more quickly than an F-35 but they can only be used once. An F-35 can potentially drop ordinance for its entire service life of 35 years. Don't count on getting any from allies either, the only export customer currently is the UK which has a grand total of 60 (from Wiki before you ask).

The truck based variant, the GLCM, was retired due to Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

This treaty banned all ground-launched cruise missiles and ballistic missiles owned and operated by the US and the USSR with ranges greater than 500 but less than 5500 kilometers both with nuclear and conventional warheads; GLCM fell under the INF Treaty, along with the US Pershing II missile. The Soviets likewise had to decommission the SS-4 'Sandal', SS-5 'Skean', SS-12 'Scaleboard', SS-23 'Spider', SS-20 'Saber' and the SSC-X-4 Slingshot'.

GLCM was removed from Europe beginning in 1988, and over the next three and a half years all units were transported to Davis Monthan AFB and destroyed or converted into displays by 1991. Eight missiles survive for inert static display only.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 68, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 7548 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 67):
The truck based variant, the GLCM, was retired due to Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

This treaty banned all ground-launched cruise missiles and ballistic missiles owned and operated by the US and the USSR with ranges greater than 500 but less than 5500 kilometers both with nuclear and conventional warheads; GLCM fell under the INF Treaty, along with the US Pershing II missile. The Soviets likewise had to decommission the SS-4 'Sandal', SS-5 'Skean', SS-12 'Scaleboard', SS-23 'Spider', SS-20 'Saber' and the SSC-X-4 Slingshot'.

GLCM was removed from Europe beginning in 1988, and over the next three and a half years all units were transported to Davis Monthan AFB and destroyed or converted into displays by 1991. Eight missiles survive for inert static display only.

Thanks mate, I learn something new every day!


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 69, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 7545 times:

In the meantime, weapons testing is starting:
http://www.codeonemagazine.com/news_item.html?item_id=608
http://www.navair.navy.mil/index.cfm...ction=home.NavairNewsStory&id=4909
http://www.navair.navy.mil/img/uploads/11P00649_24_1.jpg
http://www.codeonemagazine.com/images/media/2012_F35_P00073_1267828237_7742.jpg


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 70, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 7487 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
Do you have any sources that indicate that the US will buy less than they have agreed to?

1. The US has not agreed to buy any F-35s beyond the LRIP contracts. I am surprised you think otherwise. It's one tranche at a time.

Do the simple math: The DoD's budget is being cut, while the F-35 costs are going up. What does that lead to?

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
In 30 years time the B-1, B-52, S-3, P-3, almost all the current subs, most of the current surface ships, all current cruise missiles, all current UAVs, the A-10 and the rest of your list minus perhaps the B-2 and F-22 will be out of service and require replacement.

And some F-35s will need replacing by then too. Nothing lasts forever, that's obvious. So?

After 2030, building new subs for $3 billion each and easily lasting 40 years in service, carrying 154 cruise missiles, or more - is far cheaper than the F-35 program. The F-35 also has a far shorter range, so it's not a fair comparison in any case. You could buy over 107 such subs for the low balled acquisition price of the F-35 program.

And then you need to add the cost of the carriers and support vessels - all these cost money. I know the F-35 is supposed to do a lot of things, but landing on water is not one of them. It's a ton of money to do the same job a sub or B-2s can. For close air support a new A-10 replacement is cheaper and better, but only after 2030, as the A-10s are still with us till then.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
The F-35 total program cost over the life of the airframe, even if we take that terrible figure of 1 trillion to operate,

The $1 Trillion is only operating costs, not including acquisition. Acquisition projection in 2010 was $323 billion in addition to the $1 Trillion. That acquisition price will go higher as numerous estimates have shown. the This thing is insanely expensive. At the very least, we should count all costs, including the carriers that they operate from and the support task force to protect the carrier. It's mindbogglingly expensive.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
If I was being rude I would ask you please provide a source on how to fire 12 1,000 lb warheads from a submarine, or surface ship and maintain stealth for the entire flight?

They don't need to be stealthy. A cruise missile will hit it's target almost every time, because it's so small and flies so low and almost at the speed of sound and is fired in full stealth in a surprise attack, that its virtually impossible to defend against a salvo of them fired from a sub. They can also be programed to avoid the known defenses and they fly far. Some cruise missiles speed up to supersonic speeds approaching the target. Some are supersonic all the time.

If you use the USAF version to attack a far away target, instead of Navy F-35s, it makes even less sense, as it's range is limited. It would require a daisy chain of tankers none of which are stealthy. Take out 1 tanker and the mission is over, etc..The B-1 and B-2s would do it far better and so would cruise missiles fired from B-52s, subs and host of other platforms.

To do ground support, the DoD would be better at building an new A-10 like successor, specialized in that role and far cheaper than the do it all F-35.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
China, Syria, Iran and Russia.

You are thinking of a WW3. I don't think so. We will never go to war against China nor Russia - for many reasons. Even supposing China, I am sure China would only do anything militarily if they were confident they could neutralize the US carriers. If that happens, the F-35 would be useless anyway. They don't even have to sink them to neutralize them.

What will stop any nonsense between large countries are intertwined economic and political interests. WWIII is not going to happen. Syria type countries maybe, but cruise missiles and UAVs can take care of that even today. And the US would never o it alone in such circumstances. Allies have their own weapons too. The US does not exist in a vacuum.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 66):
Well since you like to play the source game provide me with examples of attack UAVs that will be in service by 2020 and the costs associated with operating them?

Your assumption UAVs need to land on a carrier is wrong as they have very long ranges and in a pinch never need to return.
General Atomics MQ-1 Predator, Hellfire, Stinger
General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper, 1,000 mile range, 3,800lbs weapons payload
General Atomics Avenger - Stealth, 20 hour endurance, 3,000lbs internal weapons, 60,000 feet max altitude
General Atomics Sea Avenger, carrier based
Lockheed Martin RQ-170 Sentinel - classified
X-47B - 4,500 lbs payload, 2,000 mile range, additional aerial refueling planned
X-47C - 10,000lbs payload,

As to costs, the figures I've scanned are so much less than the F-35, it's no contest.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 71, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 7438 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
After 2030, building new subs for $3 billion each and easily lasting 40 years in service, carrying 154 cruise missiles, or more - is far cheaper than the F-35 program.
Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
You could buy over 107 such subs for the low balled acquisition price of the F-35 program.

You are just trolling now.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
For close air support a new A-10 replacement is cheaper and better, but only after 2030, as the A-10s are still with us till then.

If it was cheaper and better, it would've been in development. It isn't, so it's not.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
It's mindbogglingly expensive.

But your idea to keep 40 year-old submarines and fighters jets in service isn't. Right.  
Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
If you use the USAF version to attack a far away target, instead of Navy F-35s, it makes even less sense, as it's range is limited. It would require a daisy chain of tankers none of which are stealthy. Take out 1 tanker and the mission is over, etc..The B-1 and B-2s would do it far better and so would cruise missiles fired from B-52s, subs and host of other platforms.

Excellent suggestions, you should email the DoD and see what they think of your brilliant ideas.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
To do ground support, the DoD would be better at building an new A-10 like successor

If it was better they would have built it. The USAF thinks the F35 will do just fine and it will. They fight the wars, not you.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
We will never go to war against China nor Russia - for many reasons.

And we'll never go to war against Libya, or Iran. Right?   What else is in your magic crystal ball?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
As to costs, the figures I've scanned are so much less than the F-35, it's no contest.

That is because they are formulated to fit your naive point of view. Facts don't apply to your numbers.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 72, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 7419 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
1. The US has not agreed to buy any F-35s beyond the LRIP contracts. I am surprised you think otherwise. It's one tranche at a time.

Do the simple math: The DoD's budget is being cut, while the F-35 costs are going up. What does that lead to?

Tommy, The US has in principal agreed to buy ~2443 aircraft. If it hadn't why did the GAO calculate the costs of a 2443 aircraft fleet over a 30 year period? It wasn't because they thought 2443 was a nice number!

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
And some F-35s will need replacing by then too. Nothing lasts forever, that's obvious. So?

Actually no, except in the case of combat losses no F-35 will be retired within that time frame. The open architecture of the aircraft allows for easier upgrades that previous systems and the US has proven very good at managing fleet hours to ensure aircraft don't time out.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
After 2030, building new subs for $3 billion each and easily lasting 40 years in service, carrying 154 cruise missiles, or more - is far cheaper than the F-35 program.

And yet there is no future submarine planned for the US that will carry 154 cruise missiles. In fact there is no new ship class that has 154 vertical launch tubes.

An upgrade is being conceived for the Virginia SSNs that will allow for a slight increase in vertical launch tubes and the next SSBN planned with almost certainly feature a reduction in the number of missiles tubes from the current 24 to something with not more than 16 and probably less. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SSBN-X_future_follow-on_submarine
You are also making a huge assumption that in 2040 a nuclear submarine will cost US$3 billion to acquire. The above SSBN program is looking at US$6-8 Billion per boat and that is for something being built in 2019!

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
The F-35 also has a far shorter range, so it's not a fair comparison in any case. You could buy over 107 such subs for the low balled acquisition price of the F-35 program.

The Blk IV Tomahawk has a range of 900nm, 30% more than the F-35A/C models. Given the Tomahawk cannot attack a large number of targets the point is moot. Again I will say no-one is saying the Tomahawk is not a good missile, what is recognised is it is not the right tool to attack all targets. You need combat aviation assets and for the US in the future that is the F-35.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):

And then you need to add the cost of the carriers and support vessels - all these cost money. I know the F-35 is supposed to do a lot of things, but landing on water is not one of them. It's a ton of money to do the same job a sub or B-2s can.

You can't have your cake and eat it to. The submarine fleet as well as the surface fleet requires incredible amounts of support and sustainment. This same surface fleet that you need to fire Tomahawks.

You may not like carrier aviation but it is not going anywhere. It is a critical component of US power projection. It is also ironic that other nations are returning to carrier operations. The UK is buying the largest carriers they have ever built, China is introducing one carrier into service as well as plans to build more. India also operates one carrier and is buying and building two more. Are they doing this because they like status symbols? No, they are doing it because they recognise the incredible capabilities a carrier brings to a Navy.

There are 20 B-2s, probably 6-8 are dedicated to the nuclear deterrent role so can't be used for anything else. Therefore you have maybe a peak of 8-10 aircraft available at any one time for conventional operations. There are quite simply not enough of them. So much so that the US is currently planning to field a Next Generation bomber by 2020 to partially replace the B-2.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
The $1 Trillion is only operating costs, not including acquisition. Acquisition projection in 2010 was $323 billion in addition to the $1 Trillion. That acquisition price will go higher as numerous estimates have shown. the This thing is insanely expensive. At the very least, we should count all costs, including the carriers that they operate from and the support task force to protect the carrier. It's mindbogglingly expensive.

The 2010 US defence budget including costs for overseas operations was US$663.84 billion. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_budget_of_the_United_States

As I said in my post the one trillion operating cost, plus the acquisition cost of the F-35 would equal three years of US Defence Budget. The 1 trillion plus 323 billion is 1.323 Trillion. Therefore I actually gave you too much money. You can do it for just over two US defence budgets. That is two budgets over a 42 year period for over half of all fixed wing aircraft to be operated by the US Armed Forces.

You cannot include the costs of carriers and support task forces unless you decide you are going to disband the entire US Navy. Carrier aviation in any form is not going away nor are the surface vessels of the US Navy. How will you support Marines landing on a beach in Africa if you don't have carrier aviation? In fact how will you even land those Marines on a beach in Africa without the navy?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
They don't need to be stealthy. A cruise missile will hit it's target almost every time, because it's so small and flies so low and almost at the speed of sound and is fired in full stealth in a surprise attack, that its virtually impossible to defend against a salvo of them fired from a sub. They can also be programmed to avoid the known defenses and they fly far. Some cruise missiles speed up to supersonic speeds approaching the target. Some are supersonic all the time.

And yet the S-300, S-400, SA-17 and SA-22 all claim to have capabilities against cruise missile targets. So you have a problem, these Tomahawks fired from subs and surface vessels do fly low, below the speed of sound, do not use a stealthy airframe reach the high priority target and are engaged and shot down by the above SAM systems just as they reach the target area. The above systems each have a minimum of 8 missiles and for the S-300 and S-400 closer to 32 per battery. So to attack a high value target you need to use more than 32 missiles to ensure even 1 gets through. Because you cant be sure it will be able to find the target area due to GPS jamming you need to increase that number to ensure target destruction. If we are really conservative then that is 36 missiles required, or the typical loadout of three SSNs. Alternatively you could use a combat aviation asset, like a B-52 or an F-35, to fire multiple JASSMs, a low observable missile, to hit the target with a significantly greater likelihood it will actually impact in the target area. The best scenario is you use multiple stealth aircraft, that the modern SAM systems struggle to detect or engage, to deliver JDAM or other air dropped weapons. You put more weapons of greater explosive power on target.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
If you use the USAF version to attack a far away target, instead of Navy F-35s, it makes even less sense, as it's range is limited. It would require a daisy chain of tankers none of which are stealthy. Take out 1 tanker and the mission is over, etc..The B-1 and B-2s would do it far better and so would cruise missiles fired from B-52s, subs and host of other platforms.

The range difference between the USAF (A) and US Navy (C) F-35 is about 60nm so not really significant, yet still almost twice the range of most USAF and US Navy tactical fighter aircraft. You also need to refuel B1s and B-2s as well as B-52s, most of which fly from bases further away. All three of the above almost certainly have a greater RCS than the F-35 increasing their chance of detection and engagement. That means you need to fly F-22s to protect them until they can fire their cruise missiles. What do F-22s need? Tankers, and more often than the F-35 given the F-22 has a shorter range (typical combat radius of 410nm with some supercruise, almost 30% less than the F-35 A or C, source taken from Wiki) and uses more fuel.

What happens if your target is mobile, say a convoy of tanks, a scud vehicle or an army command post. What do you use to attack it then?

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
You are thinking of a WW3. I don't think so. We will never go to war against China nor Russia - for many reasons. Even supposing China, I am sure China would only do anything militarily if they were confident they could neutralize the US carriers. If that happens, the F-35 would be useless anyway. They don't even have to sink them to neutralize them.

I wouldn't make the claim that the US will never go to war with either China or Russia. The reality is the US Armed Forces have to prepare for a World War 3. They need weapons and systems that work in high intensity conflicts as well as low. There are so many scenarios that could see China and Taiwan in a conflict that could start tomorrow or 20 years from now. I guess we won't know whether China can stop US carriers until they try!

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
What will stop any nonsense between large countries are intertwined economic and political interests.

If you really want to talk political and international relations you are in the wrong forum. We can talk about that in non-av and I can show you that there is great historical precedent for that very thing occurring.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
WWIII is not going to happen. Syria type countries maybe, but cruise missiles and UAVs can take care of that even today. And the US would never o it alone in such circumstances. Allies have their own weapons too. The US does not exist in a vacuum.

I am not willing to say that WW3 won't happen. There are enough high tech military systems in the hands of Gulf countries right now, around the largest oil trading route in the world that the ten largest economies in the world need, to ensure a conflict of sufficient scale and size.

Cruise missiles and UAVs couldn't provide the type of support that was required in Libya to oust Gaddafi. Why would Syria, with more advanced SAM systems and a nation not under military sanctions, be any different?

Allies are great but you cannot count on them to provide what the US needs to win a conflict. Most of NATO is at a level below the US as far as tactics, technology and training are concerned and not one of them have a stealth aircraft in their inventory. Those same stealth aircraft, such as the F-117, allowed the US to bomb unopposed in the both GW1 and GW2.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
Your assumption UAVs need to land on a carrier is wrong as they have very long ranges and in a pinch never need to return.
General Atomics MQ-1 Predator, Hellfire, Stinger
General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper, 1,000 mile range, 3,800lbs weapons payload
General Atomics Avenger - Stealth, 20 hour endurance, 3,000lbs internal weapons, 60,000 feet max altitude
General Atomics Sea Avenger, carrier based
Lockheed Martin RQ-170 Sentinel - classified
X-47B - 4,500 lbs payload, 2,000 mile range, additional aerial refueling planned
X-47C - 10,000lbs payload,

As to costs, the figures I've scanned are so much less than the F-35, it's no contest.

You have provided no operating costs for any of them. At each instance you requested a source I have provided one. You say you have seen figures for their costs and compared this to the F-35, please show this?

You claim they have very long ranges. This is inaccurate. Most UAVs have long loiter times. I will give you some help with the above,
MQ-1 has a range of 675nm and travels at a speed of 100 miles an hour. That means it could fly for approximately 7 hours. If you park it in an orbit above a city or town in Iraq it can stay there for a much longer period because it is not travelling anywhere. The MQ-1 costs you US$10 million each. All it can drop are Hellfire missiles.
MQ-9 has a 1,000nm range but only travels at 150miles per hour. The MQ-9 costs you US$33 million per aircraft not including the required ground stations. They are restricted to GBU-12 500 lb LGBs and Hellfire missiles.
The Avenger is a development aircraft and is frankly very vague on actual figures. It will cost a minimum of US$15 million to purchase without the required ground station infrastructure. It claims an endurance of 20 hours without providing a payload or range. It is limited to 3,000 lbs of weapons of ordinance. No one has purchased it even though it first flew in 2009.
The Sea Avenger - As above but this definitely hasn't flown and is simply a concept in response to an RFI.
RQ-170 - Given its size it appears to be a form of stealthy predator, so very slow, long loiter time and light payload. Iran has one now though so maybe we will start to hear more info about it.
X-47B is a developmental aircraft with no current plans for production. The X-47C is the enlarged concept (it has never been built or flown) It is a demonstrator. There is also no indications of what their unit costs will be but given the prices above it will not be less than ~US$20 million each and probably twice that. The X-47C is projected to have a range of ~2,000nm or around ~1,000nm combat radius. It is planned to have a wingspan of 52.1 meters, 5 times that of an F-35 or F-18 and equal to a Boeing 767! In the 5 years since the development contract for the X-47B was awarded the cost has escalated almost 35%.

All the above stats are from Wiki. I could see no operating costs. If we look at the article I used for UAV bandwidth issues we saw that the US required 570 pilots to maintain 50 UAV orbits. How many aircrew are required to crew 50 manned combat aircraft with more multi-role capabilities, perhaps 100? So right there you have 80% less aircrew required. You probably have more ground crew required for manned aircraft than UAVs but given the manned aircraft can actually fly in adverse weather or when it is windy they can be used 24 hours a day 7 days week unlike a UAV. Finally all these UAVs need a place to land, just like the F-35 and every single other aircraft in the world.
I said the X-47 was being planned to fly from a carrier. That is what it is being designed for, carrier ops unless of course you get rid of the carriers? Perhaps we need to include the carrier operating costs in their acquisition and operating costs?


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 73, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 7370 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
Tommy, The US has in principal agreed to buy ~2443 aircraft.

Either there is a binding contract for 2,443 aircraft - or there isn't. Answer: There isn't. Same as with the F-22 program. How many were planned for? How many did we end up with? The same will happen with the F-35. Sparta.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
no F-35 will be retired within that time frame

The Jury is still out, regarding the tailhook issue. The F-35 has not been able to land on a carrier yet. Let's wait a few months and see how tailhook issue goes. If it turns out that structural change are necessary, who knows what would happen to those already built. ANd there are other issues that may make these early frames impractical to ever see service. There are too many open questions yet to know how that will shake out.

Many assumptions are made here by F-35 supporters and passed as fact.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
And yet there is no future submarine planned for the US that will carry 154 cruise missiles.

That could easily happen though. We know how to do it and know how much it would cost. It is one of many potential ways to increase our firepower without the F-35.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
The above SSBN program is looking at US$6-8 Billion per boat and that is for something being built in 2019!

That price is for an SSBN, a boomer carrying nuclear ballistic missiles. Please. Apples and Watermelons.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
As I said in my post the one trillion operating cost, plus the acquisition cost of the F-35 would equal three years of US Defence Budget

So? Your point is what, in this comparison? No weapons system has ever been as expensive as the F-35 by that yardstick you use. You only highlight how much of available resources the F-35 sucks up. Do you really think it's a good idea to put so many eggs in one basket?

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
You cannot include the costs of carriers and support task forces unless you decide you are going to disband the entire US Navy. Carrier aviation in any form is not going away nor are the surface vessels of the US Navy. How will you support Marines landing on a beach in Africa if you don't have carrier aviation? In fact how will you even land those Marines on a beach in Africa without the navy?

Allow me:

1. Invading an African country will not require the capabilities of an F-35
2. Marines do not require a carrier to land on an African Coast
3. They would be supported by the many many assets we have right now that are capable of doing it, too many to list.
4. Why would we ever even land Marines on an African Coast to begin with? This was not in your 3-4 countries list.
5. Of course you need to include the costs of the carriers. The F-35 can't land on water.
6. The Navy is more than carriers.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
So to attack a high value target you need to use more than 32 missiles to ensure even 1 gets through.

Perfect kill ratio? Yeah sure. With these types of statements you lose credibility fast. But even if that were to happen, we have thousands more cruise missiles than they have SAMs. Simple math, even using a perfect kill ratio. And we do have HARM missiles to take out SAMS. And SAMS are not in thousands of locations, as they are bundled and concentrated in launchers, as you pointed out.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
The reality is the US Armed Forces have to prepare for a World War 3.

I see where your mind set is. But WW3 won't happen. You would have to give a reasoning as to why a WW3 would happen or is likely. Not going to happen. We will not agree on this.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
Cruise missiles and UAVs couldn't provide the type of support that was required in Libya to oust Gaddafi. Why would Syria, with more advanced SAM systems and a nation not under military sanctions, be any different?

True, but it didn't require the F-35 either. Thanks for making that point. Wild Weasel HARM missiles will suppress the SAMS, etc...SAM radars will either be off or taken out by HARM.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
The submarine fleet as well as the surface fleet requires incredible amounts of support and sustainment.

A sub requires no where near that of a carrier. The Aegis cruisers and other carrier protection ships, mostly are there to protect the carrier. Subs do not go around with other ships to protect it. The carrier also needs resupply vessels for Jet fuel, weapons, food, etc...and the other non nuclear support ships need fuel too. It's a city on water with a logistical dance. A very expensive way to deliver bombs. A sub can scurry around all alone and so can UAVs and they will come in full stealth capabilities (X-47) and unload 10,000lbs.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
What happens if your target is mobile, say a convoy of tanks, a scud vehicle or an army command post. What do you use to attack it then?

UAVs have taken them out countless times. And yes, a manned ground attack aircraft does well there too. The F-35 is not the only aircraft that can do it though, so that alone is not an argument for the F-35.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
We can talk about that in non-av and I can show you that there is great historical precedent for that very thing occurring.

WW3 has no precedent. Our global interests as they stand today, have no precedent.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
You claim they have very long ranges. This is inaccurate.

My statement is accurate:
X-47B - 4,500 lbs payload, full stealth, 2,000 mile range, additional aerial refueling planned
X-47C - 10,000lbs, full stealth, range even more than B version.
General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper, 1,000 mile range, 3,800lbs weapons payload
General Atomics Avenger, 3,000lbs weapons, range surely longer than F-35 with 20 hour endurance at jet speeds

The long loiter time is also most useful for troop support. You discount that capability as if useless. And you discount the Hellfire missile. It's a proven anti tank missile FYI. It can kill troop formations, buildings and tanks. In your fever to support the F-35, you seem to belittle everything else.

In general, your question was what UAVS would be available in 2020. This ones I listed are mostly current ones. The F-35 is not available now either and is still in development too. If you project UAVS forward to 2020, that would be the equivalent of the F-35 in 2020.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
You have provided no operating costs for any of them.

No, because I only claimed the operating costs are lower than the F-35. This is obvious. Do you doubt this? As to acquisition costs, going by your figures, the UAVs listed are still a fraction of the cost of 1 F-35.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
(X-47) That is what it is being designed for, carrier ops unless of course you get rid of the carriers? Perhaps we need to include the carrier operating costs in their acquisition and operating costs?

Absolutely yes. That is the correct way to do it. It becomes quickly apparent it is cheaper to make UAVs with longer ranges than to put shorter ranged ones on carriers. Putting them on carriers looks more like an excuse to find something for the carriers to do.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
You also need to refuel B1s and B-2s as well as B-52s

Please. These bombers have ranges of thousands of miles. So they can be refueled very far from any enemy. Unlike F-35 missions. The F-35 would need to tanker within 500 miles of the enemy, twice.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
You probably have more ground crew required for manned aircraft than UAVs but given the manned aircraft can actually fly in adverse weather or when it is windy they can be used 24 hours a day 7 days week unlike a UAV.

The large UAVs can fly in adverse weather. Cruise missiles can also fly in any weather.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
Alternatively you could use a combat aviation asset, like a B-52 or an F-35, to fire multiple JASSMs, a low observable missile, to hit the target with a significantly greater likelihood it will actually impact in the target area.

Or any number of non F-35 launch platforms to do that. That is an argument against the F-35.

My impression here is that in the fever to support the F-35, everything else is being belittled.


[Edited 2012-02-19 14:45:20]

[Edited 2012-02-19 14:47:51]

[Edited 2012-02-19 15:02:24]

[Edited 2012-02-19 15:12:17]

User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 74, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 7368 times:

So the F22, top of the line US fighter, replacement for the superb F15 of which we have very few anyway still causes it's Pilots to pass out inexplicably and the Replacement for the equally superb F16, this F35 keeps getting more expensive and it's entry into service gets pushed back indefinitely.


It is too complicated, too slow, too heavy and too expensive.


Most of all it is too compromised, making three different versions to do every possible mission ever done by any fighter was never going to work and it didn't.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 75, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 7328 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 74):
making three different versions to do every possible mission ever done by any fighter was never going to work and it didn't.

The DoD and USAF doesn't think so. They made the F35 for exactly this purpose, to save costs of having multiple fleets of aircraft.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 76, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 7315 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
Tommy, The US has in principal agreed to buy ~2443 aircraft.

Either there is a binding contract for 2,443 aircraft - or there isn't. Answer: There isn't. Same as with the F-22 program.


correct.. there is a major difference between "in principal" and actual signed contracts... and those to date are limited to very few a/c.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
And some F-35s will need replacing by then too. Nothing lasts forever, that's obvious. So?

Actually no, except in the case of combat losses no F-35 will be retired within that time frame.


Add some reality here.. the plane's life is 2000 hours.. those assembled today will be in the desert long before 2030.. Yes they can do some tech upgrades easier than other frames, but if primary structure is limited, I doubt that we'll throw another $10 Mill per plane to rebuild from the ground up. Common sense also says around 5 years from now, there will be a new fighter design or a technology leap that can not be retro fitted that will make this one obsolete.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 77, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7312 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):
Add some reality here.. the plane's life is 2000 hours..

Yes, no Air Force around the world has flown over the designed airframe hour mark. Right? SLEPs are in place for a reason. The F-35 will be no different from the F-15, 16, 18 etc, etc.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 78, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7314 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):
I doubt that we'll throw another $10 Mill per plane to rebuild from the ground up.

Damn right they would! Here in Canada they spent $2.6b upgrading 80 of our CF-18s with new electronics and 40 of them got new central barrels... that is a major structural piece of the jets. That works out to $32m each. In 15 years, spending $40m to upgrade a F-35 vs replacing it with anything else is a bargain.

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):
Common sense also says around 5 years from now, there will be a new fighter design or a technology leap that can not be retro fitted that will make this one obsolete.

Jets are not like your stereo... a new model comes out every year. Current fighter programs are running around 20+ years from initial issue of contracts to entry into service. So while yes, there may be more advanced tech in a lab somewhere right now, it will not be in a new fighter for decades. Even then, jet designs are getting to the point of lasting 50+ years, as of 2022, the F-15 will have been in the air for 50 years.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3396 posts, RR: 26
Reply 79, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 7314 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting Oroka (Reply 78):
the F-15 will have been in the air for 50 years.


The F-15 may have been around for 50 years from initial design and prototype.. but there isn't one that has been flying for 50 years. B-52s yes..

Quoting Oroka (Reply 78):
Jets are not like your stereo... a new model comes out every year.


Technology advances very rapidly.. The moment the F-35 was on paper, there were people designing it's replacement... That may be something new or an upgrade to an existing platform that leaps ahead..

Someone was bemoaning the A-10 passing.. Boeing just delivered the first new wings that puts the plane back into contention..

Quoting Oroka (Reply 78):
spending $40m to upgrade a F-35 vs replacing it with anything else is a bargain


my $10 Million was a figure of speech... it would probably be more like $100 mill. Still 2000 service hours isn't much.. so I guess the huge numbers required is to ensure none flies more than 100 hrs a year.. (sarcasm... usually I add    to indicate I'm stretching it to make a point)


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 80, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 7288 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):

Add some reality here.. the plane's life is 2000 hours..

Actually, incorrect. Designed service life of the F-35 is for at least 6000 hours.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 81, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 7217 times:

You guys are going to have to replace your keyboards soon.  Wow!

Meanwhile, the hits just keep on coming for the mighty F-35:
http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...ng%20Finds%20Additional%20Problems



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinesovietjet From Bulgaria, joined Mar 2003, 2578 posts, RR: 17
Reply 82, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 7188 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Just a quick question here. Instead of arguing about SLEPs and keeping the existing old airframes in service until 2030 and beyond, can someone explain why we can't just build NEW F-15s and F-16s? Those can certainly last until then.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 70):
They don't need to be stealthy. A cruise missile will hit it's target almost every time, because it's so small and flies so low and almost at the speed of sound and is fired in full stealth in a surprise attack, that its virtually impossible to defend against a salvo of them fired from a sub.

Unless the enemy has advanced SAMs and/or MiG-31s. For the latter you only need to worry about Russia and Kazakhstan I guess.

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):
Add some reality here.. the plane's life is 2000 hours.. those assembled today will be in the desert long before 2030.. Yes they can do some tech upgrades easier than other frames, but if primary structure is limited, I doubt that we'll throw another $10 Mill per plane to rebuild from the ground up. Common sense also says around 5 years from now, there will be a new fighter design or a technology leap that can not be retro fitted that will make this one obsolete.

It's 6000 hours and I can guarantee you a SLEP will happen.

Quoting kanban (Reply 79):
The F-15 may have been around for 50 years from initial design and prototype.. but there isn't one that has been flying for 50 years.

Actually the first prototype flew 40 years ago. And there are currently 34 year old 1978 vintage F-15s still flying.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 83, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 7175 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):
Meanwhile, the hits just keep on coming for the mighty F-35:
http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...blems

There is nothing new in that journalistic tabloid piece, everything has already been reported on. This is just filling space and increasing the hysteria. The anti-jsf crowd must be foaming at the mouth with all this "bad" news.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 84, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 7114 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 79):
The F-15 may have been around for 50 years from initial design and prototype.. but there isn't one that has been flying for 50 years

No, but the design is. And the F-15 was flying in 1972, 50 years from 2022. The design will have been flying 50 years.

The B-52 design as of 2012 has been flying 60 years.

Quoting kanban (Reply 79):
Technology advances very rapidly.. The moment the F-35 was on paper, there were people designing it's replacement... That may be something new or an upgrade to an existing platform that leaps ahead..

Yes, and those programs take a LONG time to develop. There is already the Next Generation Air Dominance program to replace the F/A-18EF and F-22A, and it is not even a formal request yet, just a eairly concept. This 6th gen stealth jet will feature no vert stabs, and can be pilotless... that still does not make the F-35 obsolete. The F-35 may still be in development, but it is flying, this program is simply a concept. If started today, it would be minimum 15 years before seeing service.

Russia and China's answer to the F-22 is still probably a decade from entry into service, they havent even started on a F-35 contemporary. So, unless they can pull a miracle out of their collective butts, the F-35 will be the only 5th generation lightweight fighter for 15-20 years. The F-22 itself will be the only operational Air Dominance Fighter for probably 15 years total, and even then the T-50 and J-20 will probably be inferior in most respects.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 85, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7111 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 83):
There is nothing new in that journalistic tabloid piece, everything has already been reported on. This is just filling space and increasing the hysteria. The anti-jsf crowd must be foaming at the mouth with all this "bad" news.

My latest AIR International, delivered this AM, has a damning article on the F-35. You'll be happy to know it wasn't written by Sweetman.

High risk areas:
- helmet mounted display
-fuel dump system
- IPP
- arresting hook (0 for 8 at Lakehurst)
- buffet
- fatigue life (would be a bummer to pay $386B for something that doesn't last)
- test execution (i.e., less than 5% of mission system test points achieved)

There are many many other, less critical areas of course.

Also an article that rips the F-22 as a problematic hangar queen. This will be a fun issue to go through !  

I might add that there are many out there who view AIR International as the source for authoritative information.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 86, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 7085 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
High risk areas:
- helmet mounted display
-fuel dump system
- IPP
- arresting hook (0 for 8 at Lakehurst)
- buffet
- fatigue life (would be a bummer to pay $386B for something that doesn't last)
- test execution (i.e., less than 5% of mission system test points achieved)

Nice to know that these problems are being found in testing, rather than in service. This has been covered already.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
F-22 as a problematic hangar queen.

This is true, the F-22 isn't exactly a reliable flyer. It costs a lot to keep a fighter that will decimate the battlefield in the air. Gotta pay to play.


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 87, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7087 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 75):
Quoting Max Q (Reply 74):
making three different versions to do every possible mission ever done by any fighter was never going to work and it didn't.

The DoD and USAF doesn't think so

They have been wrong before.



The F111 Was a good example of this 'one plane can do everything' mentality.


It was forced on the Navy as a 'Fighter' which mission it couldn't possibly do. That plan was finally abandoned after wasting a fortune and it stuck with being a superb Bomber. The navy then developed the F14.


Something similar needs to be done with this loser program. Stick with the VSTOL version for the Marines, abandon the other two or Vice -Versa and develop something else to fill the gap.


My take is that the design has been so compromised for the VSTOL version it has detracted from the A and C versions to the point where they are not worth the money.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 88, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7059 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):
You guys are going to have to replace your keyboards soon. Wow!

Meanwhile, the hits just keep on coming for the mighty F-35:
http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...blems

Warning: Bill Sweetman article.

Quoting sovietjet (Reply 82):
Just a quick question here. Instead of arguing about SLEPs and keeping the existing old airframes in service until 2030 and beyond, can someone explain why we can't just build NEW F-15s and F-16s? Those can certainly last until then.

New builds are just as expensive. A Block 50 F-16 goes for almost $100 million dollars, after you include government furnished equipment. Ditto the F/A-18E/F. F-15's are even more expensive.

And that's beyond the technical obsolesce of these types; they can't fly into contested airspace and still expect to survive.

Quoting sovietjet (Reply 82):

Unless the enemy has advanced SAMs and/or MiG-31s. For the latter you only need to worry about Russia and Kazakhstan I guess.

On the advanced SAM front, have you noticed the proliferation of advanced SAM's, such as the S-300 and its derivatives, Buk, and the Tor? The Russians are pretty much selling them to anyone that can drop cash in front of them.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- helmet mounted display

Got 3 years to work out the latency issues.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
-fuel dump system

Fix is already in:
http://www.airforce-technology.com/n...f-fuel-dump-system-repair-solution

Fuel dump is a non-issue, IMHO. It will be mainly used to get down to landing weight for the B&C.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- IPP

The IPP is more reliable and safer than the current hydrazine system found in most fighters today. Hydrazine is extremely volatile, and toxic fuel to handle. Not a show stopper, but they need to get fixed.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- arresting hook (0 for 8 at Lakehurst)

Fix is already in, they are re-profiling the hook, and adjusting the dampener. Mind you, this was more of a NAVAIR engineering mess up than a Lockheed Martin screw up.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- fatigue life (would be a bummer to pay $386B for something that doesn't last)

They knew about this from the beginning of the test flights, but they decided to flight test using a bulkhead they knew needed tweaking.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- buffet

Only occurs at high angle of attacks. Not a concern, especially when you read that the F-14 had the same problem at similar places in the envelope, as did the F-15, F/A-18 and the F-22. I haven't heard anybody complain about their dogfighting capability or their tails structural issues. There are several possible fixes, from reinforcement to small actuators on rudder and vertical tail surface. Or they can do what they did with the F-14 (and what seems to be recommended as the course of action by the QLR): Do nothing.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 89, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7041 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 87):
The F111 Was a good example of this 'one plane can do everything' mentality.


It was forced on the Navy as a 'Fighter' which mission it couldn't possibly do. That plan was finally abandoned after wasting a fortune and it stuck with being a superb Bomber. The navy then developed the F14.


Something similar needs to be done with this loser program. Stick with the VSTOL version for the Marines, abandon the other two or Vice -Versa and develop something else to fill the gap.


My take is that the design has been so compromised for the VSTOL version it has detracted from the A and C versions to the point where they are not worth the money.

I have to address this separately, as it would be a very long post.

When the TFX was envisioned, the idea of fighters fighting other fighters within visual range was thought to be totally extinct: sparrow and phoenix missiles would take down other fighters by a guy sitting in the right seat looking at his radar scope.

The biggest issue with your argument is that you made the assumption that TFX was supposed to be a fighter jet. From the Navy's POV when TFX was envisioned, they did not view TFX as being a fighter. They instead viewed it as a supersonic missile truck, sort of the ultimate version of the Douglas F6D Missileer.

The AF version was always supposed to be a F-105 replacement in the tactical nuclear role, with a very secondary fighter role. Any consideration of the F-111 as an "air superiority fighter" was officially dead with the 1965 RFP that resulted in the F-15, but really the air force was already undertaking design studies in late 1963.

So really the two major specifications for TFX were the low level dash, and the fleet defender role. The F-111B met its design parameters for the Navy as originally planned.

What was the real story was that the US Navy really resented taking a USAF aircraft; this was driven home by the USAF's management of the project. Members were looking for any excuse to kill it, and were willing to wage a battle to do so. What happened was that the US Navy changed their specifications to emphasize greater maneuverability in part due to their campaign to kill the program. Even in 1966, it was likely that an upgraded F-4 would be fielded as a complement to the F-111B in the fleet defense role.

Thus, the F-111B got caught between a rock and a hard place: The customer was looking for any reason to kill the program from the get go, and the requirements changed so the aircraft as originally developed, no longer met the revised requirements. It wasn't cost overruns or under performance that was the issue here; both services were willing to take underperforming, overcost aircraft. and in the end it was also found that the F-111B met or exceeded most of its requirements. The issue was more of the requirements changed, and the customer never really wanted the aircraft in the first place.

The difference here with F-35 is that the F-35 is instead more of a Navy driven program; the program management of the JSF office is populated by NAVAIR Personnel, and many of its key requirements are based on Navy specifications, not AF ones. Second, the specification and role remains valid: both services need a replacement for its Tac-Air capabilities, and they desire stealthy aircraft. So there is significant buy in from both services (including the Marines).


User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2314 posts, RR: 2
Reply 90, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 7023 times:
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Quoting Powerslide (Reply 86):
This is true, the F-22 isn't exactly a reliable flyer. It costs a lot to keep a fighter that will decimate the battlefield in the air. Gotta pay to play.

The F-22 was sold as being more reliable and less expensive to maintain than the F-15.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 91, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7014 times:

Quoting rwessel (Reply 90):
The F-22 was sold as being more reliable and less expensive to maintain than the F-15.

The development for the F-22 is half-baked because production numbers were severely curtailed, and it suffered from mission bloat.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 92, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7010 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 86):
Nice to know that these problems are being found in testing, rather than in service. This has been covered already.

Yes covered in testing and LM rolling more F-35s off the line in this stupid concurrency plan, meaning many, many a/c will need to be modified. As Adm Venlet recently said, "The cost kind of sucks the air out of your lungs".

Quoting Max Q (Reply 87):
The navy then developed the F14.

Which had its' own mx issues and was frequently referred to as a hangar quenn.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 88):
They knew about this from the beginning of the test flights, but they decided to flight test using a bulkhead they knew needed tweaking.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 85):
- buffet

Only occurs at high angle of attacks. Not a concern, especially when you read that the F-14 had the same problem at similar places in the envelope, as did the F-15, F/A-18 and the F-22. I haven't heard anybody complain about their dogfighting capability or their tails structural issues. There are several possible fixes, from reinforcement to small actuators on rudder and vertical tail surface. Or they can do what they did with the F-14 (and what seems to be recommended as the course of action by the QLR): Do nothing.

Buffet however will exacerbate the fatigue issues for the fins - which the pilots will not be very happy about. BTW the buffet becomes pretty pronounced at 20 deg AoA.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 93, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 7006 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 92):

Buffet however will exacerbate the fatigue issues for the fins - which the pilots will not be very happy about. BTW the buffet becomes pretty pronounced at 20 deg AoA

Please research the development history of the F-14, F/A-18A the F-15 and F-22. you will find report after report on buffeting issues, even at moderate angles of attack. NASA and the DoD have studied this issue for the better part of 40 years and have suggested different fixes, or simply just ignored the issue and called for better monitoring to monitor their possible effects.

FYI, as a little perspective, here's the GAO Report on F/A-18 E/F EMD Progress from 1999. "Super" Hornet came out of OT-IIB with 29 Major Deficiencies. They went into OPEVAL with 84 deficiencies, 71 of which were not corrected until after OPEVAL. The correction of many of these discrepancies, including structural fixes at 2000, 4000 and 6000 hours continues even today, 12 years later.

http://www.gao.gov/archive/1999/ns99127.pdf

[Edited 2012-02-20 21:40:52]

User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 94, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 6996 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 89):

I have to address this separately, as it would be a very long post.

When the TFX was envisioned, the idea of fighters fighting other fighters within visual range was thought to be totally extinct: sparrow and phoenix missiles would take down other fighters by a guy sitting in the right seat looking at his radar scope.

The biggest issue with your argument is that you made the assumption that TFX was supposed to be a fighter jet. From the Navy's POV when TFX was envisioned, they did not view TFX as being a fighter. They instead viewed it as a supersonic missile truck, sort of the ultimate version of the Douglas F6D Missileer.

The AF version was always supposed to be a F-105 replacement in the tactical nuclear role, with a very secondary fighter role. Any consideration of the F-111 as an "air superiority fighter" was officially dead with the 1965 RFP that resulted in the F-15, but really the air force was already undertaking design studies in late 1963.

So really the two major specifications for TFX were the low level dash, and the fleet defender role. The F-111B met its design parameters for the Navy as originally planned.

What was the real story was that the US Navy really resented taking a USAF aircraft; this was driven home by the USAF's management of the project. Members were looking for any excuse to kill it, and were willing to wage a battle to do so. What happened was that the US Navy changed their specifications to emphasize greater maneuverability in part due to their campaign to kill the program. Even in 1966, it was likely that an upgraded F-4 would be fielded as a complement to the F-111B in the fleet defense role.

Thus, the F-111B got caught between a rock and a hard place: The customer was looking for any reason to kill the program from the get go, and the requirements changed so the aircraft as originally developed, no longer met the revised requirements. It wasn't cost overruns or under performance that was the issue here; both services were willing to take underperforming, overcost aircraft. and in the end it was also found that the F-111B met or exceeded most of its requirements. The issue was more of the requirements changed, and the customer never really wanted the aircraft in the first place.

The difference here with F-35 is that the F-35 is instead more of a Navy driven program; the program management of the JSF office is populated by NAVAIR Personnel, and many of its key requirements are based on Navy specifications, not AF ones. Second, the specification and role remains valid: both services need a replacement for its Tac-Air capabilities, and they desire stealthy aircraft. So there is significant buy in from both services (including the Marines).

Everything you said just emphasises my point, Mike Tyson used to say 'everyone has a plan until they get hit'


This Joint Air Force / Navy program was a disaster precisely because One Aircraft was spread too thin between competing and conflicting roles. The F111 was forced on the Navy where it was soon determined to be hopeless as an interceptor / fighter, whatever role was envisioned it couldn't do it.



As an Air Force Bomber it was superb.



Three versions of the F35 was one too many. The Marines would have been better sticking with an updated version of the superb, unparallelled, close air support Harrier, stealth in this role is about as as useful as it was to the army's abortive, cancelled Comanche Helicopter.



The two remaining versions for the Air Force and Navy could be far less compromised then, simpler, lighter, with a far less 'draggy' Airframe and much less expensive, not needing such a monster engine to provide what is really anemic performance.


A real successor to the F16 in other words.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 95, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 6983 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 94):
Everything you said just emphasises my point, Mike Tyson used to say 'everyone has a plan until they get hit'


This Joint Air Force / Navy program was a disaster precisely because One Aircraft was spread too thin between competing and conflicting roles. The F111 was forced on the Navy where it was soon determined to be hopeless as an interceptor / fighter, whatever role was envisioned it couldn't do it.

You did not read what I wrote.

The F-111B was a fine aircraft, for the role that was envisioned for it (that of a fleet based interceptor designed to intercept SNA strike aircraft). What happened was that the role changed. The F-111B met or exceeded the original Navy design specifications. What happened was that the Navy was looking for a way to kill the program from the get go due to inter-service rivalry primarily, and secondarily, the USN was having second thoughts on the exact role. You would not believe the inter-service shenanigans that went on back in the 1960's and 1970's that killed many a joint program.

The F-111B could do, pretty much, the Phoenix-based Fleet Air Defense mission that it was intended to do while weighted down with Air Force low-level supersonic mission and other requirements. For the Fleet Air Defence mission, the F-111B was the better aircraft; The F-111B required less wind-over-deck for takeoffs and landings, loiter for longer, land with its full complement of missiles and was easier to bring aboard with two engines running, not to mention with one inoperative while the F-14 could not.

What it could not do was the traditional fighter role; a role that was never originally intended for the F-111B.

The failures of the F-111 are in no way inherent in the F-35A/B/C. The only things I see in common with the TFX program is that both programs were begun under a democratic Commander in Chief.


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 96, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 6934 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):

You did not read what I wrote.

I read it and you have some valid points but my point is. their planning was terribly flawed. There was far too much faith in the BVR concept in that era, another example of this was the early F4's being delivered without an internal gun.


Just as this planning was flawed so was the planning for the JSF, now the F35, how many Aircraft is it supposed to replace ?


Off the top of my head, the F16, A10, Harrier, F18, Tornado and i'm probably missing some.


You cannot replace all these disparate Aircraft with one machine and making three drastically different variants just makes it a jack of all trades and master of none.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
The only things I see in common with the TFX program is that both programs were begun under a democratic Commander in Chief.

Without getting political I don't see how this is relevant. You can hardly expect the President to be an expert on military
weapons.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 97, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 6903 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 93):
FYI, as a little perspective, here's the GAO Report on F/A-18 E/F EMD Progress from 1999. "Super" Hornet came out of OT-IIB with 29 Major Deficiencies. They went into OPEVAL with 84 deficiencies, 71 of which were not corrected until after OPEVAL. The correction of many of these discrepancies, including structural fixes at 2000, 4000 and 6000 hours continues even today, 12 years later.

Fair enough comment, but I believe the Rhino was not developed and tested using this concurrency concept. Prototypes and SDD frames revealed the bugs which were addressed (or not) prior to large scale production.

References to older a/c are not really valid as they were not designed with CAD systems married to data from numerical wind tunnels. It was the old "suck it and see" methodology. Perhaps you're not old enough to remember those days. I am.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 98, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 6791 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 96):
I read it and you have some valid points but my point is. their planning was terribly flawed. There was far too much faith in the BVR concept in that era, another example of this was the early F4's being delivered without an internal gun.

However, the aircraft of that era reflected the design priorities and the intended mission. The F-111B was not designed as a fighter; it was designed to be an interceptor of Soviet Naval Aviation bombers carrying cruise missiles, and engage them at long range away from the carrier. For that intended role, it was a good aircraft. What killed it was politics and inter-service rivalry. Both the Navy and the Air Force were essentially sabotaging the program for the other by making highly disparate demands on the design.

The JSF development philosophy purposely contrasts with the development of the TFX. The TFX program focused on joint development but only after Secretary of Defense McNamara canceled the F6D Missileer program and forced the Navy to accept the Air Force’s TFX to fulfill its fleet air defense requirements. The TFX was not jointly managed. Although Navy personnel worked in the TFX office, the program was run by the Air Force. Finally, Air Force and Navy TFX performance requirements were determined without industry participation. The aircraft contractors were handed the difficult task of meeting both the services’ requirements and McNamara’s requirements for low cost and a high degree of commonality between the Air Force and Navy TFX variants.

Conversely, the JSF program was established with a focus on jointness. The Program Director assignment alternates between the Navy and Air Force. Integrated teams of military and industry personnel are used, beginning in the initial concept development phase, to define the requirements of the JSF while reducing risk and the associated cost of the future strike fighter.

Unlike the TFX program, members from the Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps have enjoyed equal status in the development of the JSF. The directorship of the program alternates between the Air Force and the Navy to help ensure that one service does not dominate the program.

The Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps all plan to use the JSF for interdiction and close support missions. This congruence in missions between the services allows for a more joint program unlike TFX where the Air Force and the Navy were pulling the design in two different directions. The JSF concept of commonality is defined as all 3 variants of the F-35 being part of a family of aircraft, sharing many components, such as avionics, certain structures, and the engine.

I think you also have to understand the major change that occurred in Defence culture as a result of the Goldwater Nichols reforms in the 1980s. There is a much more collegial attitude now than in the 1960s (though it still has a ways to go in many areas). You probably wouldn't see the same level of institutional infighting that went on back then.

Likewise, the F-4 Phantom II was designed around the Fleet Air Defense mission. It was then forced into missions that the designers never intended the aircraft to do.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 96):
Without getting political I don't see how this is relevant. You can hardly expect the President to be an expert on military
weapons.

Which was the point; there is nothing identical between the two programs.


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 99, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 6721 times:

Problem is, as it was with the F111 is these were all just theories that did not work in the practical world.



I acknowledge that the F35 was a collaborative effort but this was due to financial constraints. Ideally the Air Force, Navy and Marines would have been happier with dedicated replacements for their F16, F18 and Harriers.


As far as the Harrier is concerned, a 'stealthy' replacement is simply not needed, in it's close air support role it is highly visible to the naked eye, as I said it is as useful as making an army helicopter stealthy.


The Harrier is a superb machine, a simple update would have been more than adequate.


The Navy does need a real replacement for the F18.


The Air Force should have bought 800 F22's and kept on updating and buying the superb F16, you only need stealt for the first day of the war.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlinespudh From Ireland, joined Jul 2009, 300 posts, RR: 1
Reply 100, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 6710 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
The F-111B was a fine aircraft, for the role that was envisioned for it (that of a fleet based interceptor designed to intercept SNA strike aircraft). What happened was that the role changed. The F-111B met or exceeded the original Navy design specifications. What happened was that the Navy was looking for a way to kill the program from the get go due to inter-service rivalry primarily, and secondarily, the USN was having second thoughts on the exact role. You would not believe the inter-service shenanigans that went on back in the 1960's and 1970's that killed many a joint program.

The F-111B could do, pretty much, the Phoenix-based Fleet Air Defense mission that it was intended to do while weighted down with Air Force low-level supersonic mission and other requirements. For the Fleet Air Defence mission, the F-111B was the better aircraft; The F-111B required less wind-over-deck for takeoffs and landings, loiter for longer, land with its full complement of missiles and was easier to bring aboard with two engines running, not to mention with one inoperative while the F-14 could not.

While I often don't agree with you I've always seen you as a very good source of info on the F-35 programme.

But here I think you are skewing things more than a little. Its often said that when you read two witness reports of a car accident it makes you wonder about the accuracy of recorded history.

To say that the F111B met or exceeded the original Navy design specifications and then say it was politics that killed the programe is a pretty selective picking from periods of history. The Original TFX specifications were purely driven by politics, McNamara dug his two hands so deep into military procurement that it is a fallacy to claim that the original specification was a Navy specification at all. The Navy had no choice but to accept the Whizz kid specifications, it certainly was not the other way round. And the politics of killing the F-111B were not driven by internal USAF/USN fighting, they were driven by the abject failiure of US fighters to defeat enemies BVR be it for SOP reasons or missile failure reasons, Vietnam proved that a missile shoot outs invaribly eneded in a merge. The F-4 was having a hard time in close and it was already proven that the F-4 was superior to the F-111B WVR. The F-111B's position was untenable after the first few encounters in Vietnam. The politics of the upper echelons of the Navy was such that they had actually chosen to row in behind the procurement, it took a mini revolt (and a vice admiral sacrifing his career for his pilots) to finally kill it at Congress level, the famous (at least in F-14 circles) quote "all the thrust in Christendom couldn't make a fighter out of that aircraft" by Vice admrial Tom Connolly in response to questions by Congressman John Stennis.


Lets look at some of your other claims:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
For the Fleet Air Defence mission, the F-111B was the better aircraft

Better than what exactly.
The specification was for a 50,000lb aircraft. The first F111B prototype came out at 70,000lbs dry!!! Aftrer a CWIP and a SWIP it was still 63,000lbs. Because it was so heavy it needed 26,000lbs of fuel to meet mission requirements. So with 6,000lbs of Phoenix missiles you're looking at a 95,000lb cat shot with 40,000lb engines. I'm open to correction here but AFIK the maximum allowable cat shot is of the order of 73,000lbs MTOW. So maybe the F111B would have had the loiter time to perform the FAD mission but it would have had to do it from a shore base because it certainly couldn't get off a carrier with fuel to perform the mission

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
land with its full complement of missiles and was easier to bring aboard with two engines running, not to mention with one inoperative while the F-14 could not.

Lets see, land with full missiles. The F-14 couldn't land on a carrier with full missiles, that is true or at least was not allowed to land with full missiles and the specified minimum fuel load (it had no trouble doing so on a runway). Again, I'm open to correction but AFIK this was a limitation of the carrier arresting gear, not the aircraft, So there is no way, no how, that a F-111B, even if they got it down to the specified weight of 50,000lbs was coming aboard a carrier at 60,000lbs (Airframe 6 phoenix min fuel).

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
easier to bring aboard with

Test pilots couldn't see out of it on the approach and it suffered really badly with windscreen refelction. It may have been better on the glide path, I don't know, but if the pilot can't see out then you've got a big problem. One solution is to fly the approach at a lower AoA but this means increased speed. The one thing an overweight aircraft doesn't need to carry into an arrested landing is more speed.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 95):
easier to bring aboard with two engines running, not to mention with one inoperative while the F-14 could not.

I really don't know where to start here. You're comparing what was essentially a paper airplane (one solitary F-111B ever flew off a carrier) to one that flew off carriers for 35years. They share basically the same engine but one is at least 25% lighter than the other (If they'd reached the specified weight that is). The F-111 had a very efficient, high lift wing. But the F-14 was no slouch there either. The F-14 had lift spoliers as part of its DLC which meant it flew its approach with less lift than the wing was capable of. It approached with airbrakes deployed which meant it used a higher thrust setting than required. So on a wave off the pilot had instant access to increased lift (spoilers stowed) and increased power, in a hell of a lighter airframe. I'm quite certain that the F-14 had far superior wave off capabilities than the F-111B.
Don't mix up operational requirements (F-14 after 35 years deployment) with paper specifications. The F-14 flew single engine approachs (it was actually deemed better than the F-4 on a single engine approach) and they would have been part of the original training programme for the early deployments. But then the curse of the TF-30 compressor stalls developed and it was quickly found that a single engine approach (which would likely have required a higher AoA approach and a throttle slam in case of wave off = more risk of compressor stall) was too high a risk and a divert to land base or eject became the SOP. The APU was removed from harriers for a similar reason, in the event of an engine failure the pilot was expected to save himself not the aircraft.

Pointblank, please continue to pen your very informative F-35 posts but be careful with historic references. The F-111 is a much easier stick for anti JSF proponents to yield than the pro camp.

And a word to the wise to a few other posters on the way this thread has developed, there is a a saying around here, never argue in public with a fool in case people fail to recognise who's who  


User currently offlinespudh From Ireland, joined Jul 2009, 300 posts, RR: 1
Reply 101, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 6680 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 99):
As far as the Harrier is concerned, a 'stealthy' replacement is simply not needed, in it's close air support role it is highly visible to the naked eye, as I said it is as useful as making an army helicopter stealthy.


The Harrier is a superb machine, a simple update would have been more than adequate.


The Navy does need a real replacement for the F18.


The Air Force should have bought 800 F22's and kept on updating and buying the superb F16, you only need stealt for the first day of the war.

I agree with most of what you've said but I don't agree with the 'stealth is only for day 1' opinion out there.

The F117 in Yugoslavia was shot down on day 4 of the operation. If I was flying strike missions I'd want as much stealth as I possibly could right through to the last day of the conflict. CAS is different and I think stealth moves from the 'have to have' to 'nice to have' for a dedicated CAS platform.


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 102, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 6639 times:

Quoting spudh (Reply 101):

I agree with most of what you've said but I don't agree with the 'stealth is only for day 1' opinion out there.

The F117 in Yugoslavia was shot down on day 4 of the operation. If I was flying strike missions I'd want as much stealth as I possibly could right through to the last day of the conflict. CAS is different and I think stealth moves from the 'have to have' to 'nice to have' for a dedicated CAS platform.

You have a point, but stealth is not something you need on every Fighter, this F35 is so compromised by trying to be all things for all people.


The F22 should have been produced in far greater numbers, this would have given us an uncompromised, unbeatable stealth fighter for complete air superiority.


Supplemented with regularly updated F16's we would be ahead miltarily and financially.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 103, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 6641 times:

Quoting Max Q (Reply 102):
The F22 should have been produced in far greater numbers, this would have given us an uncompromised, unbeatable stealth fighter for complete air superiority.

Which seems to spend a large fraction of its' life in the hangar. See current AIR International.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4381 posts, RR: 19
Reply 104, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 6605 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 103):


Which seems to spend a large fraction of its' life in the hangar. See current AIR International.

You are correct they need to sort that out.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 105, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 6610 times:

Quoting spudh (Reply 100):

To say that the F111B met or exceeded the original Navy design specifications and then say it was politics that killed the programe is a pretty selective picking from periods of history. The Original TFX specifications were purely driven by politics, McNamara dug his two hands so deep into military procurement that it is a fallacy to claim that the original specification was a Navy specification at all. The Navy had no choice but to accept the Whizz kid specifications, it certainly was not the other way round. And the politics of killing the F-111B were not driven by internal USAF/USN fighting, they were driven by the abject failiure of US fighters to defeat enemies BVR be it for SOP reasons or missile failure reasons, Vietnam proved that a missile shoot outs invaribly eneded in a merge. The F-4 was having a hard time in close and it was already proven that the F-4 was superior to the F-111B WVR. The F-111B's position was untenable after the first few encounters in Vietnam. The politics of the upper echelons of the Navy was such that they had actually chosen to row in behind the procurement, it took a mini revolt (and a vice admiral sacrifing his career for his pilots) to finally kill it at Congress level, the famous (at least in F-14 circles) quote "all the thrust in Christendom couldn't make a fighter out of that aircraft" by Vice admrial Tom Connolly in response to questions by Congressman John Stennis.

The Navy wanted to kill F-111B from the start. Right from the get go, the USN was looking for ways to kill the F-111B because they didn't want to buy what they saw as being a 'Air Force' airplane.

I will note that you have totally ignored the design mission of the F-111B. They were trying to design a fleet air defence interceptor designed to intercept Soviet Naval Aviation bombers (Tu-95's and Tu-16's) at long ranges. They originally intended to build something along the lines of the Douglas F6D Missileer or the Douglas F3D Skyknight, but with greater speed, range, and of course, the Phoenix missile system. For that specific mission, the F-111B did the job.

Quoting spudh (Reply 100):
Better than what exactly.
The specification was for a 50,000lb aircraft. The first F111B prototype came out at 70,000lbs dry!!! Aftrer a CWIP and a SWIP it was still 63,000lbs. Because it was so heavy it needed 26,000lbs of fuel to meet mission requirements. So with 6,000lbs of Phoenix missiles you're looking at a 95,000lb cat shot with 40,000lb engines. I'm open to correction here but AFIK the maximum allowable cat shot is of the order of 73,000lbs MTOW. So maybe the F111B would have had the loiter time to perform the FAD mission but it would have had to do it from a shore base because it certainly couldn't get off a carrier with fuel to perform the mission

1. Much has been made of how terribly overweight the F-111B turned out. And it was, compared to a totally unrealistic specification. Many think that the F-14A was far lighter than the F-111B, primarily because most comparisons neglect to do so using the F-111B’s design mission for both aircraft. The F-14A is still lighter, of course, because the Navy changed its requirements so that it would be. Deleted were the escape capsule, bomb bay, and swiveling wing pylon stations among other things. The Hughes Airborne Missile Control System, given a few more years of development, was lighter. The structure was designed for 6.5 gs at 49,548 lbs, about 10,000 pounds less than the F-111B’s design gross weight at that g level. In effect, the six Phoenixes and 3,800 lbs of fuel were treated as an overload for the design of the F-14A structure. At combat weight (13,800 lbs fuel and six Phoenix missiles) the F-111B therefore had a load limit of 5.8 g and the F-14A (12,000 lbs of fuel and six Phoenix missiles), a lower (but not particularly constraining) 5.2 g. The result, however, is a somewhat lower structural weight for the F-14A.

According to the F-111B Standard Aircraft Characteristics charts, dated 1 July 1967, when it was loaded with full internal fuel and six Phoenixes, it weighed 77,566 lbs and required 11 knots wind-over-deck on a tropical day for launch; the F-14A, not surprisingly, weighed almost 7,000 lbs less but, surprisingly, required 16 knots wind-over-deck. However, at its takeoff gross weight the F-111B was carrying 3,000 lbs more fuel than the F-14, making the difference in takeoff gross weight for the same fuel and weapons load only 3,866 lbs, or 5%, not exactly the amount or percentage difference that most would have guessed given all the negative publicity garnered by the “Sea Pig.” With that additional fuel, the F-111B could loiter on station for 1.5 hours with the combat fuel allowance assuming an acceleration to 1.5 Mach; the F-14A with the two external tanks of overload fuel, and with the same combat Mach number (one has to read the SACs very closely), could only loiter for 1.1 hours.

Quoting spudh (Reply 100):
Lets see, land with full missiles. The F-14 couldn't land on a carrier with full missiles, that is true or at least was not allowed to land with full missiles and the specified minimum fuel load (it had no trouble doing so on a runway). Again, I'm open to correction but AFIK this was a limitation of the carrier arresting gear, not the aircraft, So there is no way, no how, that a F-111B, even if they got it down to the specified weight of 50,000lbs was coming aboard a carrier at 60,000lbs (Airframe 6 phoenix min fuel).

As for landing, they were both heavy. In fact, the maximum arrested landing weight limit of the F-14A precluded it from landing back aboard with all six Phoenixes, whereas the F-111B had a 5,000 lb margin, all fuel, between its maximum landing weight and the landing weight with the standard landing fuel load of 2,417 lbs of fuel and six Phoenix (56,980 lbs). One does not need to be a Naval Aviator to appreciate being able to land with three times the required fuel. On a tropical day at the standard weight, the F-111B needed 15 knots wind-over-deck for landing; the F-14AA could only land with five Phoenix, and even then needed 17 knots wind-over-deck at its maximum landing weight of 51,830 lbs.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 106, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 6612 times:

Back on topic, more pictures on the F-35's weapons tests:
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7207/6911044589_e1b33b7b72_o.jpg
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7041/6911043833_26f0276b1c_o.jpg
http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/blogs...516784-4f4f-40d6-8a23-c5ccd65ffa91


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 107, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 6515 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 106):
Back on topic, more pictures on the F-35's weapons tests

Interesting photos. Exactly how stealthy is that ?



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 108, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 6383 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 107):

Interesting photos. Exactly how stealthy is that ?

Classified. But obviously, less stealthy than a completely internal configuration.

And flight tests have been joined by the F-35B, with external weapons:
http://www.navair.navy.mil/index.cfm...ction=home.NavairNewsStory&id=4923
http://www.navair.navy.mil/img/uploads/20120222_O_GR159_002.jpg

As part of the flight test regime for this year, fit checks, captive carriage, pit drop and aerial drop tests are scheduled. The F-35B already has done a number of "pit testing” of weapons, or releasing weapons while the aircraft is parked on the ground.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 109, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 6265 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 107):
Interesting photos. Exactly how stealthy is that ?

Stealthy enough for times you have already delt with air defences and dont need stealth, rather than parking the jet.

It is not meant to be stealth, it is meant to haul metal to drop on ground targets. Not all mission profiles require stealth.

Now, you are going to say 'then why bring sidewinders if it is for ground attack'. Well, there is the risk you will run into something, and with the internal bays blocked, you dont want to be left undefended.

[Edited 2012-02-24 08:26:01]

User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 110, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 6229 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
Either there is a binding contract for 2,443 aircraft - or there isn't. Answer: There isn't. Same as with the F-22 program. How many were planned for? How many did we end up with? The same will happen with the F-35.

Until they cut number the current plan is to buy 2443 aircraft. Of course they haven't signed a contract for 2443 aircraft, that would be silly.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
And yet there is no future submarine planned for the US that will carry 154 cruise missiles.

That could easily happen though. We know how to do it and know how much it would cost. It is one of many potential ways to increase our firepower without the F-35.

It works both ways mate. If they can plan to buy 2443 F-35s they can plan to buy a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks. Still doesn't change the "fact" that the US Navy, which has planned submarine classes for the next 20 years, have no plans to build a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
Quoting Ozair (Reply 72):
The above SSBN program is looking at US$6-8 Billion per boat and that is for something being built in 2019!

That price is for an SSBN, a boomer carrying nuclear ballistic missiles. Please. Apples and Watermelons.

Correct, it is for an SSBN, I even mentioned that in my statement. Yet the only submarine the US has that can carry 154 Tomahawk missiles is a former boomer. Any new boomer will carry Trident D5 already so the missiles are already paid for, the above cost is for the boat only.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
True, but it didn't require the F-35 either. Thanks for making that point. Wild Weasel HARM missiles will suppress the SAMS, etc...SAM radars will either be off or taken out by HARM.

Hold on, so because I accurately assessed that more than UAVs and cruise missiles (manned combat aviation) were required in Libya that means that F-35s aren't needed? I am not sure how that logic works? Does that mean you don't need the B-52 and F-22 either because they weren't used there? Incidentally they did use B-2s, so there was a requirement for a stealth aircraft to conduct strikes in country.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
My statement is accurate:
X-47B - 4,500 lbs payload, full stealth, 2,000 mile range, additional aerial refueling planned
X-47C - 10,000lbs, full stealth, range even more than B version.
General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper, 1,000 mile range, 3,800lbs weapons payload
General Atomics Avenger, 3,000lbs weapons, range surely longer than F-35 with 20 hour endurance at jet speeds

The long loiter time is also most useful for troop support. You discount that capability as if useless. And you discount the Hellfire missile. It's a proven anti tank missile FYI. It can kill troop formations, buildings and tanks. In your fever to support the F-35, you seem to belittle everything else.

In general, your question was what UAVS would be available in 2020. This ones I listed are mostly current ones. The F-35 is not available now either and is still in development too. If you project UAVS forward to 2020, that would be the equivalent of the F-35 in 2020.

Your missing the point. Of your above UAVs only one is in service. The other three are development aircraft. It would take at least 6 years for the avenger to reach service, longer for an X-47B and the X-47C is nothing more than a Wiki concept, so probably 10-12 years minimum. The closer you get to matching fighter aircraft for capability the longer the development, SDD phases for UAVs will take to the point they will match and potentially exceed a manned aircraft in required time.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
No, because I only claimed the operating costs are lower than the F-35. This is obvious. Do you doubt this? As to acquisition costs, going by your figures, the UAVs listed are still a fraction of the cost of 1 F-35.

The operating costs for a MQ-9 might be cheaper but there is absolutely no evidence that any advanced UCAV using a stealth airframe (as the ones you claim above) would have lower operating costs. Why would the ability to maintain stealth on a UCAV be any different to a manned fighter aircraft? The X-47 B & C concept will use fighter sized engines, the X-47C likely an F-35 engine, and they may suffer greater landing incidents given they land by operator or remote control.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 73):
The large UAVs can fly in adverse weather. Cruise missiles can also fly in any weather.

Name them and provide evidence of such. My conversations with USAF personal indicate a very different story. As the large UAVs are very similar to a U-2 it is no surprise that they have similar handling characteristics.

Quoting kanban (Reply 76):
Add some reality here.. the plane's life is 2000 hours.
Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
Actually, incorrect. Designed service life of the F-35 is for at least 6000 hours.

The GAO calculated an expected service life of 8000 hours, same as a Blk 40 or above F-16.

Quoting Oroka (Reply 109):
Now, you are going to say 'then why bring sidewinders if it is for ground attack'. Well, there is the risk you will run into something, and with the internal bays blocked, you dont want to be left undefended.

The internal bays aren't blocked. They can still be used wit the gun pod on the centreline. Your right about the AIM-9X, even over Afghanistan US aircraft carry one AIM-9 just in case.


User currently offlinetommytoyz From Tonga, joined Jan 2007, 1353 posts, RR: 6
Reply 111, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 6218 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 110):
It works both ways mate. If they can plan to buy 2443 F-35s they can plan to buy a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks. Still doesn't change the "fact" that the US Navy, which has planned submarine classes for the next 20 years, have no plans to build a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks.

This can be changed. Simple as making a decision to do it. Don't forget that the decision to purchase the F-35 full production aircraft hasn't even been made yet, at least not by people who actually have the authority - much less how many.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 110):
Name them and provide evidence of such. My conversations with USAF personal indicate a very different story. As the large UAVs are very similar to a U-2 it is no surprise that they have similar handling characteristics.

My sister flies them. And cruise missiles even today can fly in any weather the proposed 2020 F-35 will be able to do a mission in.

Quoting Ozair (Reply 110):
The other three are development aircraft. It would take at least 6 years for the avenger to reach service, longer for an X-47B and the X-47C is nothing more than a Wiki concept....

I will not respond to any more of your posts, because you lose all my respect. I will not discuss with people making ever more ridiculous statements like the one above. I do suggest however, that you stop making the error of comparing current day technology with 2020 F-35 technology. All technology will advance in 2020, not just the F-35.

[Edited 2012-02-24 13:49:57]

User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 565 posts, RR: 1
Reply 112, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 6198 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 111):
I will not respond to any more of your posts, because you lose all my respect. I will not discuss with people making ever more ridiculous statements like the one above.

You are quickly running out of people to respond to, because they don't agree with your narrow point of view. Soon enough you'll just be talking to yourself. 


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 113, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 6176 times:

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 111):
My sister flies them.

Please thank her for her service. I have several good friends in the US Armed Forces and I have a lot of respect for them given what they have had to go through the last 10 years!

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 111):
I do suggest however, that you stop making the error of comparing current day technology with 2020 F-35 technology.

I'm not sure why you say this as pretty much everything I am talking about is for any manned aircraft, not just the F-35.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 111):
I will not respond to any more of your posts

No worries mate.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 114, posted (2 years 5 months 10 hours ago) and read 5855 times:

I realise this is partly written by the (apparently) ignorant Bill Sweetman, but there are several excellent points made:

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...tion%20Programs%20Fail&channel=dti

It's fairly general and although it does refer to the JSF in several locations,it also identified other large-scale programs deemed to have 'failed'.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 115, posted (2 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 5624 times:

In the meantime, Norway is pressing on with its planned purchase. They are planning to buy around 50 F-35's:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...hter-idUSL2E8E5CLX20120306?rpc=401


User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1079 posts, RR: 0
Reply 116, posted (2 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 5592 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 110):
It works both ways mate. If they can plan to buy 2443 F-35s they can plan to buy a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks. Still doesn't change the "fact" that the US Navy, which has planned submarine classes for the next 20 years, have no plans to build a submarine that can carry 154 Tomahawks.

Make sure you brief the U.S. Navy brass on that because they thought they already had the SSGN class that could carry up to 154 LAM's...even had one launching LAM's against Libya...
 


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 844 posts, RR: 1
Reply 117, posted (2 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 5511 times:

Quoting checksixx (Reply 116):
Make sure you brief the U.S. Navy brass on that because they thought they already had the SSGN class that could carry up to 154 LAM's...even had one launching LAM's against Libya...

Maybe you should actually read what was written above? What you quoted was with respect to the cost of replacement for the SSGNs, which will decommission in 2023, 2024, 2025 and 2026, http://www.fas.org/programs/ssp/man/.../navy/submarines/ssgn726_ohio.html If you read reply 60 you will see that I introduced the SSGN to the discussion and subsequent information was on the cost of a replacement, which is not currently funded or planned by the "US Navy brass".


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Reply 118, posted (2 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 5388 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 114):

I realise this is partly written by the (apparently) ignorant Bill Sweetman, but there are several excellent points made:

He is not ignorant, he is well recognized as having pretty much a personal vendetta against the F-35, so anything he writes, fact or opinion will be heavily coloured against the F-35. He makes good points, but leaves out facts that contradict his viewpoint.


It makes 1000000% sense to hold the production ramp up until the F-35 is truly ready for full production. This WILL increase the price of LRIP jets, but the decrease in price will simply happen later than planned.


If the amount of F-35s ordered is decreased, they will not be replaced with an order for a legacy fighter, there will be more likely a decrease in number strength that the us military will simply have to live with.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 119, posted (2 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 5194 times:

Meanwhile, the Israeli's are looking to increase their order:
http://www.jpost.com/Defense/Article.aspx?id=258666

Quote:
According to initial plans, the IAF would place the order for the second squadron in late 2012-early 2013 and begin receiving the planes in 2020. It is possible however that the US would attach the new squadron to the one ordered in 2010 and expedite the delivery if the order is placed soon


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1680 posts, RR: 0
Reply 120, posted (2 years 4 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 4755 times:

First night time trip to the flying gas station:
http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/new...e_f35a-completes-night-refuel.html
http://www.lockheedmartin.com/content/dam/lockheed/data/aero/photos/press_photos/2012/march/12J00166_08-medium.jpg

Next up will be qualifying with the KC-10 at night.


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