AC787
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A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 10, 2005 5:02 am

Just wanted to know if airbus has marketed the 380 to any governments as a possible troop transport or if the idea is even viable. It would seem like a good plane for the job, they could probably fit 800+ troops in the plane and would be good for rapid dispatch. Only drawback I could see is that there would need to be a good sized runway to be able to take her. Anyone heard of this talked before, might be good for the Canadian army so that we don't need to ask for other countries to fly our troops to the places they need to go...

AC787
 
Lemurs
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 10, 2005 5:06 am

Considering most troop movement nowadays is charter work done by airlines, it'll happen, but not in a special-purchase configuration. The only troop transport most Western military organizations want specialized aircraft for is the kind of transport that goes into hot zones. (i.e. combat troop transport)

I'm sure it'll happen, but it will be on a flight-by-flight basis depending on who has them, if anyone.
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AC787
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 10, 2005 5:11 am

Quoting Lemurs (Reply 1):
Considering most troop movement nowadays is charter work done by airlines

Is that really true for the US, and most of the world. I know the US does it considerably but they surly have massive lift capabilities on there own for troop movements before they rely on charters. It would be interesting to see how much different governments rely on troop charters for there troop movements, I had always thought it wasn't too significant
 
Pronto
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 10, 2005 8:49 am

Probably a long shot - it's too expensive to buy as a personnel transport for a country's military and look at the airlines ordering it - not exactly military charter types...
 
LY744
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 10, 2005 9:51 am

The military always prefers something a little more self sufficient than an airliner. You can't always rely on ground handling equipment to be available at the site of deployment, which is why your typical military transports have ramps, kneeling capability etc.

Bottom line is that if you need an airliner to transport a bunch of troops, it's so much easier to just charter a civilian one. It's only when it comes to moving the associated equipment that special needs arise that cannot be solved using an average civilian aircraft. Also important is the fact that when you have an airplane that can transport the personnel of an entire battalion at a time, it will spend 95% of the time sitting around doing nothing. Nobody out there today is able/willing to afford that, especially not Canada.


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kc135topboom
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Wed May 11, 2005 5:13 pm

Quoting AC787 (Reply 2):
Is that really true for the US, and most of the world. I know the US does it considerably but they surly have massive lift capabilities on there own for troop movements before they rely on charters.

The US Miltary can actually move people and their equipment by putting the troops on charters and using the C-5, C-17, KC-10, and KC-135 to fly equipment.
 
jwenting
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Wed May 11, 2005 9:44 pm

And of course in times of need the government can temporarilly nationalise airliners (complete with crew).
The US government pays the airlines for their use, not all countries are that nice.
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ruger11
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Tue May 17, 2005 1:44 am

I know this might not be a good issue to bring up... considering, but imagine the horrific impact on our military, the families, government, insurance, political pressures, etc if a plane with 500-600, maybe more troops went down?

jeez... the after effects would be terrible, especially in today's media picked-apart military.
 
KennyK
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Sat May 28, 2005 7:44 am

The only time I see an A380 being used by the UK military is for the odd charter flight, 747s have been chartered in the past.
 
bsergonomics
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Sat May 28, 2005 11:11 am

To get troops to near the theatre for a major engagement? Possibly.
To get them to the battlefield? No.

As stated by most other posters, it may be chartered to get large numbers of troops to a neighbouring country or seriously in the rear of the theatre, but it simply does not have the survivability, nor the capability to land and turn around on semi-prepared airfields.

In addition (and as hinted at in earlier posts), there are few nations that could afford to lose 850 troops in one go and still wage an effective campaign. We need to remember that these won't be 850 grunts, but a mixture of standard infantry soldiers and specialists. The latter are not easy to replace. History teaches us well. In the Falklands campaign the 48 men who died on the Sir Galahad in Bluff Cove, along with many other injured, caused changes in the battle plans. However, they had a much more serious political effect back home in the UK and it caused a major political drive to be launched (far more than the 60000 casulaties on the first day of The Somme, 1916).

The western world seems to be able to cope with 5-10 soldiers killed every day, much in the same way as we accept 7 people per day killed on Britain's roads. However, 850 killed in one go and it could (would?) change the entire course of a campaign.

For that reason alone (although all of the military and engineering aspects are still valid), IMHO the A380 will not be used to transport troops anywhere near the battlefield.
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KennyK
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Sat May 28, 2005 4:27 pm

Bsergonomics, I totally agree, the way the size of UK forces is going you could get the whole army on an A380.

Only joking, but the loss of even 500 men would probably cripple an operation bearing in mind the small numbers of men deployed nowadays. I believe a C5 crashed in Germany during the first Gulf War, imagine if that had been full of troops!!
 
bjornstrom
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Sun Jun 12, 2005 2:17 am

Remember the 248 killed from 101st Airborne in Gander 1985:
http://www.screamingeagle.org/gander.html

I saw the memorial at Ft Campbell KY last summer.

OT: Got my hair shaved there and they gave me a Airborne money clip. Martin shaved Visiting 101st Airborne
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whitehatter
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RE: A380 As A Troop Transport?

Sun Jun 12, 2005 6:34 am

There are also some agreements which have lasted for many decades now between Governments and airlines, where a retainer is paid to the airline in return for which the Government can 'call up' the aircraft in times of need.

One particular operator ordered a couple of their fleet with cargo doors for no obvious reason whatsoever some years back. That was the reason why, the Government had a requirement for standby aircraft in that configuration and size.

These agreements are administered and negotiated quietly as there is no need for publicity.
Lead me not into temptation, I can find my own way there...

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