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C-17 To Be Unseated By New Airlift Design.  
User currently offlineCX747 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4454 posts, RR: 5
Posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 5540 times:

I read the article in AW&ST yesterday, on the possible closure of the C-17 line and thought that one of the most important comments was overlooked. Supposedly, the Air Force is looking into another airlifter after C-17 production ends. Boeing and Lockheed were brought to the Pentagon to go over the specifics and engine manufacturers have been contacted.

The new design would be a manned platform, stealthy, capable of inflight refueling and better able to deliver US Army material directly to the front line. If the manufacturers go along quietly with the C-17 line closing, the new airlifter process will start almost immediately with 2015 as the timeframe for this bird to enter service.

I guess the service sees some of the shortcomings of the C-17 and is looking for an actual airlifter with intercontinental range and battlefield capabilities.


"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
17 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineCHRISBA777ER From UK - England, joined Mar 2001, 5964 posts, RR: 62
Reply 1, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 5507 times:

Whats wrong with the C17 then?

I thought everyone was really happy with it?



What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
User currently offlineCX747 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4454 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 5464 times:

The article didn't say that there was anything wrong with the C-17, it just stated that the Air Force was happy with having 180 airframes. It seems that there has been a shift in thinking among the top brass. They want 180 C-17s, 100+ updated C-5s, a new 737/777 tanker multirole aircraft and this new airlifter. As I stated in my earlier post, both Boeing and Lockheed are currently working on proposals and engine manufacturers have been given "specs" for new engines etc. IF this aircraft comes to fruition and it is definitely a big if, it would be great to see it based at McGuire!


"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 5407 times:

Watch, in 2020 there will be no new airlifter as it will have already been cancelled due to it costing 4 times what the C-17 did. Everyone will be sitting around figuring out how to keep the remaining, say, 150 C-17s in the air for another 40 years.

User currently offlineCX747 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4454 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 5364 times:

FlyF15, I couldn't agree with you more! In my opinion, they should just continue to order the C-17 because it is already proven and in gosh darn production. The likelihood of new designs making it to the fleet are remote, if it ain't broke.


"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
User currently offlineCX747 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4454 posts, RR: 5
Reply 5, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 5362 times:

In another article, Congress pushed through a fully funded C-17 bill that enables the Pentagon to continue purchasing the airlifter. It seems that Congress agrees with keeping the C-17 line open. I would love to see this new airlifter, but I don't think we will ever see it.


"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8955 posts, RR: 60
Reply 6, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5244 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
DATABASE EDITOR




Quoting Flyf15 (Reply 3):
Everyone will be sitting around figuring out how to keep the remaining, say, 150 C-17s in the air for another 40 years.



Nah, they'll be spending all of their time figuring out how to keep the KC-135s in the air for another 40 years.

 Wink




2H4





Intentionally Left Blank
User currently offlineSidishus From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 519 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 5100 times:

Quoting CX747 (Thread starter):
The new design would be a manned platform, stealthy, capable of inflight refueling and better able to deliver US Army material directly to the front line. If the manufacturers go along quietly with the C-17 line closing, the new airlifter process will start almost immediately with 2015 as the timeframe for this bird to enter service.

There has been persistent talk of such an aircraft for a while:

http://www.janes.com/defence/air_forces/news/jdw/jdw030217_1_n.shtml

Dubbed "MACK" for M-X; A-X; a regular airlifter, C-X; and a future
tanker, K-X, it is being offered up for AFSOC use. It is also being
considered for a stealthy penetrating tanker role




(ASWT Feb 23 2005):
"Moreover, U.S. Air Force representatives have indicated interest in a
stealthy tanker to support their stealthy attack platforms, the
F/A-22, F-35 and B-2, to make them less susceptible to attack while
they refuel. To adequately satisfy that demand, Lockheed Martin has
devised a stealth shrouding for the refueling "boom."



http://www.afa.org/magazine/Oct2004/1004watch.asp

Concepts for the next generation of airlifters already are taking shape, even as the Pentagon and the Air Force struggle to define the right numbers of C-17s, C-5s, and C-130Js to sustain the military airlift requirements for the midterm. (See “The Airlift Gap,” p. 34.)

Afghanistan and Iraq have underscored the need for a new tactical transport that would fulfill a variety of airlift and special operations roles, Air Force officials reported. The new aircraft—dubbed Advanced Mobility Concept, or AMC-X—would have about the same cargo capacity as a C-130 but be able to fly higher and faster, while operating from 2,000-foot runways. Moreover, the AMC-X would be stealthy.

“We’re talking about ... airliner speed,” close to Mach 1, said Col. Marshall K. Sabol, Air Mobility Command’s deputy director of plans and programs. The C-130’s average speed is 345 mph.

AMC also wants an airplane that can fly at the altitudes used by airliners, with greater range and greater survivability, he said. Paramount for the new transport will be its ability to operate at austere locations and carry outsize cargo, said Sabol.

Moreover, the next tactical airlifter will have to be able to operate in blackout conditions at low level, perform paratrooper and equipment airdrop, operate in all weather, and be capable of accomplishing “autoland”—automatic, virtually hands-off landing, guided only by the runway and onboard navigation systems.

Such requirements are “not the future,” said Sabol, adding, “it’s where we operate” today.



the truth: first it is ridiculed second it is violently opposed finally it is accepted as self-evident
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 4966 times:

Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 1):
Whats wrong with the C17 then?

I thought everyone was really happy with it?

It probably needs a 5000ft strip in foggy places, isn't really hard to spot by a not so good radar. Fuel costs perhaps could be better. The design is from the seventies & the aircraft took ten years to mature. The maintenance costs are probably not the lowest around. So is the price.

The C-17 is a great aircraft, but lets not exaggerate. In a few years there must be some room for improvement.

We don't want end up standing empty handed when a suitable EADS aircraft roars around, do we? One time is enough  Wink


User currently offlineCHRISBA777ER From UK - England, joined Mar 2001, 5964 posts, RR: 62
Reply 9, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 4959 times:

Ok so why cant they stretch the C17 by a dozen frames, uprate the undercarriage and put new engines (GENX??) to accomodate the higher MTOW?


What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 4776 times:

Quoting Keesje (Reply 8):
We don't want end up standing empty handed when a suitable EADS aircraft roars around, do we? One time is enough

You're being cryptic again Keesje. Explain.


User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 11, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 4729 times:

My first reaction was 'isn't this kind of early', but then i figured theyy have been flying for 10 years and it takes a while to study, then propose (which implies competition for a contract), then launch, then develop the airplane to begin with. S I guess the time frame stated makes some sense; Apart from the fact that C-17's will be 20 or so years old by then.

Are there any C-5 replacements planned, why is it still flying? How is it still flying with relative Boeing 747-100 era engines?  Smile



The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4693 times:

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 10):
You're being cryptic again Keesje. Explain.

The USAF wrote spec for a tanker, send out an rfp. Contenders kc767 & KC330. KC330 met the specs better & was cheaper. So specs were rewritten. It came out: real senior folks got the sack, jailed etc. Boeing IDS still recovering.

Now it can´t be the kc767 (because how to disqualify the kc330?) so look for the next in line : the not existing KC777. Because they a little big lets get some smaller ones: the not existing KC737, to compensate.

I think one needs a very patriotic senate to get away with this. So better get a suitable US product in line before the A400 becomes the best suitable aircraft for a requirement and we get the complete dog & pony show all over again.


User currently offlineGalaxy5007 From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 626 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 4665 times:

Quoting Lehpron (Reply 11):
Are there any C-5 replacements planned, why is it still flying? How is it still flying with relative Boeing 747-100 era engines?

Its flying cause its a great airplane when it does fly. There isn't any plans for replacing them, and the re-engining and avionics are being upgraded as we speak. It'll take a while, but the C-5s will be around for at least another 30-40 years.


User currently offlineCX747 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4454 posts, RR: 5
Reply 14, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4602 times:

With new engines and avionics, the supposed mission rate for the C-5 will climb from 50% to 75%. While nothing can do what Fred does, lets keep ordering C-17s or its replacement.


"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
User currently offlineLMP737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4553 times:

Quoting Keesje (Reply 8):
It probably needs a 5000ft strip in foggy places, isn't really hard to spot by a not so good radar. Fuel costs perhaps could be better. The design is from the seventies & the aircraft took ten years to mature. The maintenance costs are probably not the lowest around. So is the price.

The C-17 is a great aircraft, but lets not exaggerate. In a few years there must be some room for improvement.

Use of the word "probably" and "perhaps" makes it sounds to me like you are guessing on some of this. When you say maintenance costs, fuel costs and purchase price are not the lowest my question is, compared to what? Is there any other new build aircraft that can do what he C-17 does along with lower maintenance costs, fuel costs and purchase price? With modern high bypass turbo fans, winglets, FBW controls and reduced crew requirements I would say the costs are not as high as you seem to think.

Now if you're argument is that a newer airplane would have lower maintenance and fuel costs I would of course say yes. Every new generation of aircraft shows improvements in these areas. However given the history of Pentagon acquisitions the purchase price will be undoubtedly higher. Especially one that is designed to be stealthy.

Quoting Keesje (Reply 8):
We don't want end up standing empty handed when a suitable EADS aircraft roars around, do we? One time is enough

And what does EADS have to offer, the A400M? Oh yes, an airplane that has yet to fly and even when it does it will not even come close to matching the capabilities of the C-17.


User currently offlineCloudy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (8 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4523 times:

An AW&ST article said the Pentagon does not want any more C17's because it has something better in the pipeline and that something is classified.

Take this with a grain of salt considering the source but.......from what I've heard on the Art Bell show......

There have been many report of a large black mass moving silently, or nearly silently, at night. It ascends quickly but not incredibly so. It is commonly seen near known military bases. A major UFO research organization (MUFON I believe they call it) did some research and suggested it could be a large, composite military airship with stealth properties. Such a craft could transport a huge ammount of stuff to any point from continents away.

There are many, obvious problems with this theory. To put it mildly. But its fun to speculate, is it not?


User currently offlineGunships From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 574 posts, RR: 6
Reply 17, posted (8 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 4226 times:

Quoting Flyf15 (Reply 3):
Everyone will be sitting around figuring out how to keep the remaining, say, 150 C-17s in the air for another 40 years.



Quoting 2H4 (Reply 6):
Nah, they'll be spending all of their time figuring out how to keep the KC-135s in the air for another 40 years.

It's not hard for me to imagine keeping C-17's and KC-135's in the USAF inventory for another couple of generations of piolots. Following the examples of the C-130, B-52, etc., I wouldn't be surprised if my grandchildren's kids lived in a time of C-17's and KC-135's in the USAF.

Quoting Galaxy5007 (Reply 13):
Its flying cause its a great airplane when it does fly.

As maintenance-intensive as it is, Galaxy 5007 is right on the mark. There is nothing that can touch the capabilities of a mission-capable C-5. It offers flexibility that will not be matched by a new airlifter anytime soon. New wings/engines/avionics will keep Fred flying well into the future.


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